The DeFeo Murders

"When I first began my research into the Amityville murders, I never could have imagined the story I would uncover."
~Author Ric Osuna - The Night the DeFeos Died

Throughout history, the DeFeo murders also known as the “Amityville Murders” have been considered a result of demonic hauntings that occurred within the home of 112 Ocean Ave. in Amityville, New York. This fact is due, in part, to the fact that it seemed as if the man that committed the crime, Ronald DeFeo Jr. who was also known as “Butch”, had absolutely no feelings that were considered to be appropriate after murdering his entire family on the 13th day of November in the year of 1974. It appeared that he was suffering from some sort of psychopathic tendencies. However, there are many that believe that the DeFeo murders extended past mental illness. These individuals believe that the Amityville murders were a direct result of demonic hauntings that occurred in the Amityville horror house on Ocean Avenue.

In the fall months of the year of 1976, the attorney of Ronald DeFeo Jr. developed an interest in something considered to be a bit unusual during this decade – the possibility that demonic hauntings were directly responsible for the violent crimes that his client had committed. Most medical professionals that focused on psychiatry and researched the case felt that DeFeo may have suffered from paranoia and even schizophrenia because he seemed to meet the diagnostic criteria for bother. However, his attorney – William Webber – felt that there was something quite mysterious and unusual about the entire case involving the DeFeo murders. Could paranormal activity in the home have caused Ronald DeFeo Jr. to murder the family that he had spent his whole life with as a result of demonic possession?

In the fall months of the year of 1976, the attorney that represented Ronald DeFeo Jr. contacted a popular doctor by the name of Hans Holzer. This individual specialized in paranormal events and topics during the 1970s. He wrote several books on the topics and took one of the most active roles in early parapsychology. In addition to this, he was considered to be one of the first professionals to take on the activity of searching for ghosts in field investigations. When it came to the paranormal, Dr. Hans Holzer was considered to be one of the leading experts in the field. Ronald’s attorney knew that if the Amityville murders had anything to do with demonic hauntings, this doctor would be able to provide the evidence needed to confirm that fact.

Dr. Hans Holzer was quite excited when he received contact from the attorney that represented Ronald DeFeo Jr. because he had placed a lot of time researching the popular DeFeo murders. He, too, believed that the crime could have been a direct result of demonic hauntings or even demonic possession. Holzer quickly agreed to conduct an investigation at the Amityville horror house on 112 Ocean Avenue in New York. To ensure that the investigation would be as thorough as possible, he invited along a close friend who was considered to be a trance medium. Her name was Ethel Johnson Myers. The house was empty because a family had just moved out. The family that had lived in the home just prior to the investigation was George and Kathy Lutz as well as their children. At the time of the investigation, the popular book titled “The Amityville Horror” had not yet been composed and the story was still silent on a public level. However, the DeFeo murders were quite a popular case - how could a man murder his parents and siblings?

Before conducting the investigation, which took place on the 13th day of January in the year of 1976, the paranormal expert and the medium worked to obtain every detail possible associated with the DeFeo murders. They also invited the attorneys that worked closely with Ronald DeFeo Jr. to the investigation as well as a researcher associated with Channel 5. The name of the researcher was Gerri Warner. The medium, Ethel, spent quite a bit of time in which room attempting to pick up any type of energy that she could. It was at that time that Dr. Hans Holzer began a video recording of the investigation. Unfortunately, the camera that was being used malfunctioned shortly thereafter.

Ethel went into a trance-like state and started to express many particularly interesting points related to the structure that they were investigating. According to her testimony, the Amityville horror house had been constructed over a section of land that was considered to be sacred to a tribe of Indians that had designated the area as a place for their dead. It seemed that the exact location of the home resided over the special tomb of a Chief that was highly respected throughout the tribe. According to her testimony, the DeFeo murders were a direct result of the wrath of the Indian Chief’s angry spirit that still walked the land. Because of the fact that Ronald DeFeo Jr. was a troubled person, battling years of abuse and using recreational drugs, he was possessed by this angry spirit.

According to the investigation, demonic hauntings of the Indians that considered the land to be sacred, were extremely angry and were seeking revenge for the fact that their eternal rest was interrupted. As a way to express the anger that they experienced as a tribe, the susceptible Ronald or “Butch” was possessed and committed the crimes without even realizing it. Throughout his stay at the Amityville horror house, Ronald was often reported to become angry, experience violent outbursts, and going into trances that were uncharacteristic for him. It appeared that when the Amityville murders took place, it was not Ronald that had committed the crimes. He was simply a living vessel for demonic hauntings that wanted to seek revenge on the souls that were responsible for breaking their sacred ground.

In addition to the demonic hauntings of the Indian tribe that dedicated the land to burying their dead, the medium discovered that the DeFeo family still appeared in the home on occasion. Their spirits were torn and confused because of the fact that they did not understand why their son and their brother had taken their lives from them. It appeared that they revisited the home on a spiritual level quite often in order to uncover the answers to all the questions that they had. Ethel Myers concluded that the spirits of the deceased DeFeo family were sad and extremely troubled. Crossing over and being free from the bonds of the Amityville horror house would assist their souls. Due to this, Ethel kindly requested that her cherished spirit guide cleanse the home so that the DeFeo family spirits could move on to a higher level of spirituality and not be confined to the structure any longer.

Due to the findings associated with the paranormal investigation of the home where the Amityville murders took place, Dr. Hans Holzer decided that he should investigate the DeFeo murders a bit more. On the 27th day of June in the year of 1979, he took William Webber and they were to the Penitentiary in the State of New York where Ronald was located in order to speak with him. Initially, the doctor tried to walk Ronald through being hypnotized but he was consistently unsuccessful. When Ronald responded to his useless efforts, he made a comment that a group identified as “they” would not permit the hypnotism. Once he discovered that his attempts would not be successful whatsoever, he decided to have a little talk with Ronald.

As they discussed the events leading up to the DeFeo murders, the doctor was able to document Ronald in saying that all types of unexplained phenomenon occurred throughout the Amityville horror house. Many unusual sounds that could not be explained occurred in the structure. As a matter of fact, for quite some time, the family was convinced that they were not the only people in the structure. It was not at all unusual for sounds that resembled knocking and footsteps to be heard by the DeFeo family. The presence of demonic hauntings seemed to be apparent when Ronald expressed the fact that there were instances that he would hear unsettling screams, despite the fact that no other person was present at the time. As the interview continued, it became evident that the DeFeo murders could have very well been a result of demonic possession of the entities that were believed to be present in the Amityville home.

Ronald recalled the time when religious symbols were placed strategically around the structure. One day, he had come in when the family was having a discussion about the unexplained phenomenon occurring in the structure. He recalled the fact that his mother had claimed that she experienced something that she referred to as “evil” and felt that the best way to protect herself and her children was to place the religious symbols throughout the entire home. Ronald concluded that when he killed his family that tragic November that he felt as if he was not himself. He felt something odd inside of him and no matter how much his mind and heart contested to the fact that what he was doing was wrong; he stated that he could not stop what he was doing until he had murdered everyone in his home. The tragic DeFeo murders continue to haunt the world. Were the Amityville murders a result of demonic hauntings? This continues to be one of the world’s greatest unsolved mysteries.

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