A Texas couple made global headlines back in 2011 after their property was searched for a “mass grave” that was later debunked as nothing more than a bad tip from an alleged psychic.
Joe Bankson and Gena Charlton have now filed a lawsuit against the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office and several media organizations.
“Not a single body was found buried in the backyard,” attorney Andrew B. Sommerman told The Dayton News. “This all started with a psychic who gave them (the sheriff’s office) a tip — a bad psychic who had given the sheriff’s office tips in the past that were wrong.”
Along with the sheriff’s office, Sommerman says the couple is filing suits alleging false statements against several media organizations, including KPRC, Belo Corp. The New York Times, CNN America, Thompson Reuters and ABC News.
In their lawsuit, the couple alleges that the search resulted in “mental anguish,” financial loss and “substantial damages” to their reputations.
When asked what the couple hopes to achieve, Sommerman said, “A little dignity. Vindication … At least now everyone will know the truth.”
In June 2011, local officials, the FBI and several national media organizations descended on the property as reports began to circulate that 25-30 bodies were buried on the grounds. After a search that Sommerman says left extensive damage to the property, police were forced to admit that their only “evidence” had come in the form of a tip from a 48-year-old grandmother, and self-described psychic, going by the name of “Angel.”
In their lawsuit, which was filed last week in the 193rd Judicial District in Dallas, Bankson and Charlton claim they have been unable to return to their rented home because, “everyone looks at them askance because of the accusations made against them.”
The couple also alleges that the sheriff’s office failed to secure their property after what they call an “unreasonable search.”
“This situation was handled okay on our end. It checked out for us,” Liberty County Sheriff Henry Patterson told the Dayton News. “I am not worried about our part of it. Everyone (the media) at that location was told that nothing was going on and we couldn’t stop what happened.”
The couple is also reportedly trying to sue “Angel,” who is listed as a Jane Doe in the lawsuit, but they have as yet been unable to obtain her legal name.
An 11-year-old Vietnamese girl in HCM City can radiate and burn things that surround her, confirmed his father on May 13.
Mr T. in Ward 2, Tan Binh district, said that her daughter automatically burnt nearly everything in the third storey of their house on May 12, perhaps with the super-energy radiated from her body. The girl was not exposed to fire inducing objects.
Fire fighters were called to distinguish the fire.
Mr T.’s family discovered his daughter’s unique ability about one month ago and has recently allowed the media to meet her in the hope that both domestic and foreign scientists can step in and help treat her bizarre ‘disease’.
Mr T. said his family has been worried, tired and tense following several recent incidents.
At first, his family’s electricity network underwent repetitive short circuiting. Many electrical sockets in the house also burnt when the girl approached them.
Taking the girl to other homes causes the same phenomenon. She also burnt the hotel room where her family stayed during their holiday on Vung Tau beach.
Recently, the girl burnt a corner of the toilet seat . Sometimes, her clothes suddenly burst into flames.
Her family now guards her around the clock to prevent any possible incident. When she goes to sleep, water buckets and a wet towel will be placed next to her bed to put out the fire in case of emergency.
The T. family took the girl to a scientist, named Du Quang Chau, at Hong Bang International University for treatment.
After several tests, the scientist said he noticed variations from the norm in her cerebral hemisphere. Further research into her strange case is needed, according to Chau.
The girl was medically examined at Cho Ray Hospital and the Children No 2 Hospital but doctors found nothing abnormal about her body.
The girl once had a serious accident at the age of 3.
Princess is the star of New Jersey’s Popcorn Park Zoo and she has correctly picked the winner of five of the last six Super Bowls.
She went 14 and 6 predicting regular season and playoff games this year, and has a lifetime record of 88-51.
The Bactrian camel’s prognostication skills flow from her love of graham crackers. Zoo general manager John Bergmann places a cracker and writes the name of the competing teams on each hand. Whichever hand Princess nibbles from is her pick.
On Wednesday, she made her pick with no hesitation at all, predicting bad news for Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, even though the Las Vegas oddsmakers have New England favored by about 3 points.
Her only miscue in the big game was picking the Indianapolis Colts over the New Orleans Saints two years ago, indicating that even camels know it’s generally risky to go against Peyton Manning.
“It started out when a local radio station was looking to have some fun, so they asked Princess who was going to win a particular game each week, and it just took off from there,” Bergmann said. “Now we have guys calling up on Sunday morning wanting to know who Princess has picked that week. One guy even asked if she does lottery numbers.”
Her best season was 2008, when she got 17 out of 22 games right, including correctly picking the Pittsburgh Steelers to win the Super Bowl.
Princess doesn’t do point spreads. But she has nearly mastered the art of picking straight-up winners.
The cunning camel was once the personal pet of heiress Doris Duke, the only child of tobacco and electric energy tycoon James Buchanan Duke.
Doris Duke raised Princess and her sister Babe from youngsters, Bergmann said.
The pair of camels had their own barn, and spent summers at Duke’s Rhode Island estate. During bad weather, they were put up in the solarium.
After Duke’s death in 1993, the camels stayed on her estate in Hillsborough. Babe died several years ago, leaving just Princess.
When Princess’ caretaker was about to retire, the estate offered Princess to Popcorn Park Zoo, which took her in. The zoo cares for abandoned and abused animals.
For over 20 years, self-declared psychics Rose Marks and her family made $40 million from their fortune-telling business. Unfortunately they didn’t predict this.
The 60-year-old clairvoyant and eight members of her family are between them facing up to 1,220 years in jail for fraud and money-laundering following their arrest.
Prosecutors allege that the family, who ran a chain of fortune-telling businesses across south Florida, took advantage of desperate clients who came to them for help with troubles ranging from failing marriages to terminal illness.
They tricked clients out of their life savings by convincing them that “in order to excise a curse or evil spirits and the illnesses they caused, the clients had to temporarily give large sums of money so they could cleanse the money of the curse or evil spirits,” according to the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida.
Customers were told if they failed to consent, “terrible catastrophes” would befall them, such as hauntings, physical suffering and – in the one prophecy that came true – financial hardship.
When police seized the family’s estate, it included an ocean-front mansion, $1.8 million worth of gold coins and 20 vehicles including a Bentley convertible, a Rolls-Royce and Harley-Davidson motorbikes.