The Possession in Gary, Indiana

Source: IndyStar

Source: IndyStar

The story of Latoya Ammons and her family has gotten the attention of practically the whole world. There’s almost 800 pages of official records as well as dozens of interviews with police, psychologist and family members. There’s also interviews with employees of the Department of Child Services and a Catholic priest.

Latoya moved in to her rented home in November 2011. The oddities didn’t take long to manifest. First, the family noticed a peculiar amount of black flies swarming their screened-in porch. That might not sound weird at first, but this was in December. And no matter how many were killed, they just kept coming back.

In March 2012, the family had some company over. Screams were heard from upstairs and when Latoya made it up there, she witnessed her 12 year old daughter unconscious and levitating above the bed.

The family decided it was time to try and get some help. Most of the churches in the area refused to get involved, though one did offer the suggestion of using oil to draw crosses on all of the windows and doors in the home (which they did).

Then, the family met with a few clairvoyants who told them there was more than 200 demons in their house and they should move.

Unable to afford a move, the family took more advice and put an altar in their basement and smudged their house with sage. The house was only still for 3 days before the activity began again. This time at an alarmingly increasing rate.

Latoya’s twelve year old daughter said that she was held down while a voice told her that she wouldn’t live another twenty minutes or see her family again.

The children’s grandmother (Latoya’s mother), Rosa Campbell said in an interview that “the demons didn’t affect her because she was born with protection from evil. She said she, and others like her, have a guardian who protects them.”

Some nights were so bad the family was forced to stay in a hotel.

Next, they consulted their family doctor. While in the office, both of Ms. Ammons sons began cursing in demonic voices while one of them was lifted and thrown into the wall (incidentally knocking him out). When he woke up, it took 5 grown men to hold down the seven year old.

Valerie Washington from Child Services interviewed the family at the hospital. While doing so, the youngest son started to growl and his eyes rolled up into the back of his head. Then, he wrapped his hands around his brother’s throat and wouldn’t let go until his hands were pried off of him.

Later that evening, Valerie and registered nurse Willie Lee Walker brought the two boys into a small exam room for an interview. Their grandmother joined them.

The 7-year-old stared into his brother’s eyes and began to growl again. “It’s time to die, I will kill you,” he creepily said in an unnatural voice. While he spoke, his older brother started to head butt his grandmother in the stomach repeatedly. She grabbed his hands and began praying.

All of a sudden, to everyone’s amazement, the boy oddly smiled and started walking backwards UP a wall to the ceiling. Then he flipped over onto his feet, all while his grandmother was still holding onto his hands. Valerie said there was no way possible that this could happen and said that he “glided”.

The boy does not recollect this occurrence and he was unable to repeat the unbelievable feat.

Child services then took the kids into custody with out a court order.

In April 2012, Rev. Michael Maginot visited the family. While he was there, he witnessed lights flickering, blinds swinging in one of the bedrooms (when there was no wind or air flow to cause it), and he also saw unaccounted for wet footprints in the living room. He told the family the home wasn’t safe, so they temporarily moved in with a family member.

Clinical psychologist Stacy Wright evaluated the youngest son and said, “This appears to be an unfortunate and sad case of a child who has been induced into a delusional system perpetuated by his mother and potentially reinforced” by other relatives, she wrote in her psychological evaluation. It was noted that his stories started to change each time and he would begin to act possessed when he was challenged or asked a question he didn’t particularly want to answer.

Clinical psychologist Joel Schwartz, who evaluated Ammons’ daughter and older son, came to a similar conclusion.

“There also appears to be a need to assess the extent to which (Ammons’ daughter) may have been unduly influenced by her mother’s concerns that the family was exposed to paranormal experiences,” Schwartz wrote.

Latoya, and all three of her children continued to insist they were possessed by demons.

The Dept. of Child Services decided to set goals for the family. One of them stipulated that the children “not discuss demons and being possessed and … take responsibility for their actions.” It was also necessary to begin attending therapy to address past behavior.

While Latoya was credited for sharing a “close bond” with her children, the agency also said she needed to use “alternate forms of discipline not directly related to religion and demon possession.” Appropriate discipline included encouragement, rules and withholding privileges. She could work on those goals during supervised visits with the children.

The mother also had to find a job and appropriate housing “due to the paranormal activity” at the house on Carolina Street. While she worked on meeting those objectives, police and The Dept. of Child Services officials continued to investigate strange happenings in the house.

On May 10, 2012, the people present at the home were Rosa Campbell, Latoya Ammons, Charles Austin, Rev. Michael Maginot, child services family case manager Samantha Ilic and a few other officers.

Police Captain Charles Austin said he left the house at nightfall. The officer has dealt with many scary instances; he’s been shot at, investigated homicides, rapes and robberies, but he said he would not stay in the house after dark.

From the article at IndyStar:

“The other officers continued to walk through the home. On the main floor, they noticed an oil-like substance dripping from venetian blinds in a bedroom but couldn’t figure out where it was coming from, police records state.

To make sure Campbell or Ammons hadn’t poured oil on the blinds, two of the officers used paper towels to clean it off. The officers sealed the room for 25 minutes and stood nearby so no one could walk in.

When they went back in, the oil had reappeared, according to police records.

Maginot told police the liquid was a manifestation of a paranormal or demonic presence.”

The family’s case manager, Samantha Ilic went through a string of medical problems after visiting the home. A week after she visited the house for the last time, she got third-degree burns from a motorcycle. Within the next 30 days, she also broke three ribs while jet skiing, broke her hand when she hit a table, then broke her ankle running in flip-flops.

“I had friends who wouldn’t talk to me because they believed that something had attached itself to me,” she said.

Rev. Maginot told Latoya to look up the names of the demons that were tormenting her. Each demon has a name and personality; and the name has power, he said.

Latoya said she and a friend looked up the demons’ names online by searching for demons that represented the problems the family had been having. The computer kept shutting down. She said she felt sick, lightheaded. But they did find names that fit.

One such name was Beelzebub, lord of the flies, she said. She said they also found names of demons that torture and hurt kids, which she felt explained what happened in the Carolina Street house.

Rev. Maginot ultimately performed three major exorcisms on Latoya Ammons – two in English, and the last one in Latin – in June 2012 at his Merrillville church after he was given permission by Bishop Melczek to perform the rites.

The Reverend said his voice continued to get louder and more forceful until the demon weakened. He said he could tell how strong the demon was by how much Ms. Ammons convulsed.

Two police officers stood nearby in case Ammons needed to be restrained.

Latoya said she prayed with Rev. Maginot until it became too painful. She said she felt like something inside her was trying to hold on and inflict pain at the same time. “I was hurting all over from the inside out,” she remembered.

In the final exorcism at the end of June 2012, Rev. Maginot said he prayed and berated the demons in Latin, rather than English.

Police officers didn’t attend this time, so Maginot said his brother stood guard. The Reverend said Latoya convulsed while he condemned the demons but did not convulse during prayer. When she fell asleep, he was thankful.

It would be the last time that Latoya saw Rev. Maginot. She and her mother drove back to Indianapolis, where they say they now live without fear.

The Aftermath:

Ammons’ old home on Carolina Street became an object of local curiosity — so much so that the owner and landlord, Charles Reed, called the Gary Police Department to ask officers to stop driving by the house because it was scaring his new tenant.

He said there were no problems in the home before or after Ammons and her family lived there. “I thought I heard it all,” said Reed, who’s been a landlord for 33 years. “This was a new one to me. My belief system has a hard time jumping over that bridge.”

However, when told of the Catholic Church’s involvement in the situation, Reed said that made him “less skeptical.”

Latoya regained custody of her three children in November 2012, about six months after they’d been removed. DCS continued to check in on the children and make sure they were going to school until the case was closed last February.

Ammons called her children’s return the happiest day of her life. “It was just awesome,” she said. “I hadn’t been that happy in God knows how long.”

The children said they felt safe after they left the house on Carolina Street. “No demonic presences or spirits in the home,” family case manager Christina Olejnik wrote in her meeting notes dated Jan. 10, 2013.

For her part, Latoya said it was not the psychologists who resolved her problems but God. “When you hear something like this,” she said, “don’t assume it’s not real because I’ve lived it. I know it’s real.”

Story Source: IndyStar

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