Spirit of the Badge

Deputy Sheriff
Sunday, 29 April 2012 16:36

In my jurisdiction there stands a home that is over 100 years old. The area I work in as strong historical significance to slavery and the abolishitonist movement. At the time of my expereince this home was uninhabitated.

The home was a brick three story victorian style home on a large corner lot. My partner and I got called to the residence one evening to investigate a possible burglary. A neighbor close by noticed an open door and called the police. This seemed strange to my partner and I because we had worked that district together for nearly 3 years and had never been aware of any problems at that house.

My partner and I arrived there shortly after 2:00 AM. We did not observe any lights or movement inside the residence. We located the open door and announced ourselves before making entry. When no responded to our announcement, we carefully made entry. We began a methodical room to room search of each floor. We searched the entire residence and were unable to find any persons or signs of forced entry on any windows or doors. I then radioed disptach and asked them to contact a key holder. Once dispatch verified that a key holder was 30 minutes out, my partner and I waited in the residence for their arrival.

After waiting for approximately 10 minutes we started getting curious and began taking notice of furniture and pictures that appeared to be as old as the house. I was standing in the main hallway off of the living room I was admiring the moonlight through a large picture window when I saw a shadow cross the hallway from the foot of the staircase and into the living room approximately three feet away. My first reaction was, Crap we missed someone. I drew my weapon and yelled for my partner who had wondered into the kitchen. Once she was closer I again identifed us as police officers and demanded that the person I saw come forward with their hands up. No one responded. My partner and I had worked together for sometime and we DID NOT for a second doubt one another. She asked me for a physical and clothing description of the person I saw. I explained that I had only seen a shadow. I didn't know it at the time but we were about 2 feet apart and back to back. The I hear her scream, "POLICE, SHOW ME YOUR HANDS". I didn't turn immeditaly because the subject may circle back through the living room and attack us from behind. When I asked her to describe what she saw she said that she had also just seen a shadow. After demanding the subject to come out one more time, we decided that I would go into the living room from one end of the hallway while she cover the other. I slowly approached the corner of the living room entry way and breathed in deeply. I then made entry quickly into the living room. I saw aboslutely no one there. There was no other way into the living room but the two entry ways we had be covering. All of the windows in the living room were closed and locked. I shouted to my partner and asked if could see anyone from her position. She of course said she had not. We then called for backup to conduct a more thorough search of the residence. Backup arrived and a secondary search was conducted. Again nothing was found. By then the key holder had arrived. She was an older agent with a real estate firm. I informerd her that there did not appear to be any damage or property missing from the residence. She kinda got this "I knew there wouldn't be" look on her face. She must have noticed my expression because she stated," Young man that house has been haunted for 75 years."

She went on to say that she had grown up in the area and the house was kind of an urban legend. Apparently a previous owner of the residence had fallen off of the roof of the house in the 1930s and died instantly. Since then every owner of the house had reported strange activity. She said that in the 1960s the house had been abandoned for a few years and the high school kids would often break into the house to drink beer and "smoke some grass". One night a group of kids were in the house and they all saw a strange man standing in the main hallway staring at them. After that night they never went back to that house.

I have no explination for what my partner and I saw, but I can say that we are experienced officers. We are trained to trust our instincts and we don't draw our weapons unless we feel that we are in danger.


Exceptional experiences are often shrugged off as oddities. Some people find them frightening and dismiss them. Some who have exceptional experiences are considered strange or even mentally ill-certainly deluded. Sometimes they are. These experiences, however, can touch the experience in personal and significant ways that cannot be dismissed as ideas of reference. Rather, they seem to catalyze a process that eventually can lead to the realization of the person's higher human potential. Lives, worldviews, and even identities can be transformed. When this process of transformation is initiated, an exceptional experience becomes an exceptional human experience.
--Rhea A. White
Article Becoming more Human as We Work
Transpersonal Methods for the Social Sciences, 1998