"We need to leave here because we are trespassing."
I heard those words a couple of years ago on a video that was presented by a claimed psychic/paranormal investigator. She and her son were walking through an abandoned home where she claimed they once lived. When called out, she immediately backtracked by saying her son was "kidding" when he made that statement.
In another incident in 2011, a team bragged about breaking into a location--in fact, they posted so much about it on Facebook that it led to the police tracking them down and citing them for trespassing. Another team posted in their blog that they were approached by the police at a location they were investigating. According to their website, they were allowed to stay after telling the police what they were doing. Whether that is true or not, in most cases the law enforcement officers are not so..understanding. For example:
June2008- Six adults were charged with criminal trespass at an abandoned amusement park in El Paso Texas. They claimed they were there investigating reported paranormal activity.
May2011- Four adults received summons for trespassing in Bangor, Maine, claiming to be ghost hunting. They were caught scaling a barbed wire fence with a fifteen month old baby in tow.
August2011- Five adults were issued appearance tickets for trespassing in Wingdale, New York. A video that accompanied the news report showed the extremely unsafe condition of the building they were illegally entering.
August2012-Four young adults received summons to appear for breaking into an abandoned hospital in Western Australia. They were reportedly carrying torches (flashlights) when apprehended.
An article posted September of 2012 on the Haunted Society website claims that more than 200 reports of trespassing were filed throughout the US in about a month's time. Many of these reports were for instances of 'ghost hunting'. Of course two of the worst case scenarios include a woman who fell to her death in Ontario and a North Carolina man who was killed from a fall while waiting for a 'ghost train'. In both cases, trespassing was involved.
"Oh but this isn't the serious paranormal researchers!" one might say. Really? Teams have posted, even bragged about their adventures in trespassing, and many are teams that claim to help people by 'using the scientific approach'. Do a youtube search of abandoned buildings and see how many paranormal teams showcase themselves breaking the law. Read some of the comments--"walked along the tracks to get there. Amazing, no security or no keep out or no trespassing signs were noticeable." Some comments even give directions. And they want to go into people's homes to help them find answers?
What the hell is going on? Is this another mixed message from the paranormal scene? The one thing I thought a majority of teams agreed on was the trespassing issue. All of this begs the question--just how many paranormal teams are doing this? Furthermore, how many are okay with it and willing to look the other way?
Do penalties need to be stricter? Trespassing laws vary from state to state, and each county may have additional ordinances as well. Generally it is considered a misdemeanor, however some cases of criminal trespass can be a Class 4 or Class 6 felony. Fines can be anywhere from $1,000-$2500 with up to a year in jail or in more serious cases, prison time. Stricter punishments might dissuade a few, but until the paranormal scene stops looking the other way--I'm afraid things won't change much. "Paranormal unity" sites claim that trespassing is something they are against, and yet these teams who have done it are welcomed. To call them on it would 'cause drama'. Everyone makes mistakes and who are we to judge, right?
It's not about judging, it's not about the fact that people make mistakes and move past them. It's about breaking into buildings that are about to collapse. It's about bragging on Youtube and Facebook, showing others how to 'get away with it'. It's about people breaking the law in the name of paranormal investigating.
My New Year's resolution is to look harder at pictures presented for opinions and not just at the dustballs and the light squiggles. Cemeteries after dark, abandoned buildings--all of these will be questioned harder now. When possible, the locations themselves will be contacted to confirm that permission was given. Teams that brag about itor that are charged with trespass will be added to the Paranormal In Review website to be shared by other pages that call out the para~crap. If a team added to the list actively educates others and uses their experience in a positive way, it will be acknowledged, but the team name will remain. Many of these buildings are unsafe and the bullshit of paranormal teams posting trespassing videos is going to get more dumbasses doing this. This will get someone hurt or killed and only hasten the buildings demise. So if a team makes that choice, it will be called out and the locations contacted.
Let's hope we can get beyond the bullshit.
There seems to be a big problem in the paranormal community and that is to trespass. Not only do they trespass they steal items in some cases. We have decided to do this page on those who trespass. Then for some reason they like to brag on facebook what they have done. It is in our opinion these teams should be blacklisted in the community. Do these type of people steal when they go into homes? Time for the community to clean itself up.
Enter the owner's land or property without permission.
Avoluntary wrongful act against the person or property of another, esp. unlawful entry to a person's land or property without their...
Verb. transgress - infringe - sin - offend
Noun. transgression - offence - offense - sin - wrongdoing