Paranormail Investigation

Paranormal Investigation

Paranormal investigators spend night in ‘hanging jail’

A few dusty bare bulbs did little to dispel the eerie shadows of the 92-year-old Beauregard Parish jail for a group of paranormal investigators.

The building, known as the “hanging jail” because two men were executed there in March 1928, was closed in 1984. The years have not been kind. The walks are crumbling, the paint is peeling, and the iron bars and doors are covered with a thick coat of rust.

Despite the less-than-perfect conditions, members of LA Spirits, a group of paranormal investigators, set up their cameras in the jail, running hundreds of feet of video and power cables from the basement to the third floor.

“This is so great to be here,” said Brad Duplechien, founder and director of the group. “We are ready to get to work and see what we can find.”

In October, the group was given permission by the Police Jury to look for paranormal activity in the old jail.

Shelly Mills, an investigator with the group, said they considered access to the old jail “an honor.” She said her personal experiences there this month included an electromagnetic field spike and an infrared camera that “jiggled” and then fell over.

Also, one bedded-down member reported smelling pipe smoke and hearing footsteps and what sounded like a running shower.

“We cannot post this as evidence,” Mills said. “Only personal experiences.”

Originally, the investigation was to last five hours, but the group opted to spend the night monitoring their surroundings.

To collect evidence, the group uses an assortment of high-tech gear – infrared cameras, hand-held video cameras, digital cameras, digital voice recorders, infrared thermometers and electromagnetic field meters.

Members generally take three to four weeks to review their findings and issue a report. The group and parish officials believe the investigation will boost publicity for the old jail and increase tourism – especially if the group reports paranormal activity.

Among the other famous Louisiana landmarks investigated by the group are Shreveport’s Municipal Auditorium, home of the Louisiana Hayride, and the Oak Alley Plantation, Restaurant & Inn in Vacherie.

Mills said the group’s goal is the scientific study of paranormal activity, including attempts to debunk positive findings.

On March 9, 1928, Joe Genna and Molton Brasseaux were hanged for the Aug. 28, 1926, robbery and slaying of 45-year-old DeRidder taxi driver J.J. Brevelle.

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