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George Lutz on DarkWalls.com (2005)

Brief interview touching on George's thoughts on Kaplan, Holzer and the Warrens as well as the family's life after leaving Long Island. A rare interview from 2005 where no mention is made of the MGM remake.

 

Darkwalls.com interview

(2005)


An Exclusive Interview with the Man Who Lived at 112 Ocean Avenue. By Louise Bohmer.

It has been called the most famous of American hauntings. The Amityville Horror. The story has sold over 6 million books with 13 reprints, and the movie grossed 86 million at the box office. Here now is an interview with George Lutz, the man who lived in the house at 112 Ocean Avenue.

LOUISE BOHMER: What were your views on paranormal phenomenon before your experience at 112 Ocean Avenue?

GEORGE LUTZ: I considered myself as much a skeptic about most such things .........as anyone else might be. One way to put it would be that unless I personally had experienced such things.(paranormal phenomena), I had no basis to either believe or not believe in such events. I do know that trying to describe my views, in any interview, would not be as complete a discussion as I would wish possible, because I believe that we all have some experiences that we are reluctant to talk about publicly and it is in exchange of these experiences that we all learn.

We had no reason to suspect that there was any reason to be wary of the history the house had up to the time of moving in, yet we were concerned about our children's opinions. We spent time as a family deciding if we all agreed that we wanted to live there. When a unanimous decision was reached, then we went forward with the purchase.


LOUISE BOHMER: Do you feel that the heart attack Steve Kaplan (one of the original perpetrators of the 'Amityville Horror Hoax" myth) and the heart attack Jay Anson (author of, The Amityville Horror: A True Story) suffered were mere coincidences, or were somehow connected to the paranormal phenomenon that occurred in the Ocean Avenue house?

GEORGE LUTZ: Kaplan was a "vampireologist" and self proclaimed parapsychologist that never was involved in any investigation of the phenomena we experienced. We denied him access to our property when our own research (a few phone calls to the university he said he taught at and Duke University's paranormal research group founded by Dr. Rhine) failed to confirm any of his so called qualifications as a serious, credentialed researcher. He lied and misrepresented himself to me personally and to the press. When he was exposed, out he went on a "mission" to spend the rest of his life trying to make a name for himself in another way ........as an author of a book that purports to expose our story as a hoax. It was a waste of life for him and has only served to leave his family as well as his memory scarred by a fools errand and a legacy of ridicule for himself and his wife.

His exclusion from the investigation was based on the unanimous recommendations of the qualified experts we were able to assemble, and I have never regretted asking for their recommendations or my decision. In order that anyone be able to come to a reasoned conclusion about the controversy he sought to create, one must also become aware of his efforts to become notorious. Any review the work he produced reveals the motivation behind it. His anger at being refused entry was clearly the driving purpose of his book and the only way he could associate himself into the case was by declaring it a hoax.......it was effective enough to get him noticed until his lack of credentials became his own undoing. One example of this was referring to himself as "Dr. Kaplan," yet his degree was paper only and purchased from a nonexistent school that was not accredited and did not require his attendance.

He did serve a purpose that has always been more important to the story than was ever understood at the time. ........He continued to make the public aware of the story and helped to get us all thinking and talking about such phenomena, and to come to our own conclusions about such things.

With that brief summary of Steve Kaplan's non-involvement with my family, we can now try to discuss your question about coincidences and connections.

It is easy to blame "the house" on events that have befallen those involved with it in one way or another. The threads of "coincidence" do seem to support undeniable links that make for great drama and supposition. It is just as easy to pull some quote from the bible like 2Peter2 and lay it all on the offender....in this case, Kaplan.....and ......it is almost as easy to just dismiss such an idea with a feign at ignorance and humor.........

Although I prefer the humor to all else, – the idea – of the question itself ....is just too serious for me personally to laugh away........I have seen too much these last 28 years to do that.......the fact that Kaplan died as soon as his "book" was finished.......can lead to the idea that his "job" was done and he was no longer useful to the evil that supported his task . This is probably as valid an explanation as the fact that his addiction to cocaine finally caught up to him. His apparent anger at his exclusion and subsequent ridicule coupled with a complete disregard for the truth, however, lead me to the conclusion at the time of his death that the "coincidences" surrounding The Amityville Horror are not always so easy to explain away or even understand for ourselves. I never once believed he had any conception of what he was dealing with and he certainly did not have the personal depth to explain or expose nothing but his own corruption.

He physically died of congestive heart failure.....................although in my opinion he had died to himself years and years before this.


LOUISE BOHMER: Do you feel that the heart attack Jay Anson (author of The Amityville Horror: A True Story) suffered was a mere coincidence, or was somehow connected to the paranormal phenomenon that occurred in the Ocean Avenue house?

GEORGE LUTZ: This is a difficult question about my own feelings and not just because the feelings are private to me but also because over the years they have changed in some respects. The simple answer is yes, I do feel there was or is a connection. I am not willing to discuss or explore this further at this time.

LOUISE BOHMER: After you fled the house, did you experience any other odd occurrences? Or, was that the end of the frightening events? After you fled the house, did you experience any other odd occurrences?

GEORGE LUTZ: Yes we did experience "odd occurrences" and these continued for years. I tried to look on it as having a kind of half life in that as time went on, these occurred less frequently.

Years later we were asked to take lie detector tests, and one of the questions was about the time we levitated at my mother in laws house after we abandoned the Amityville house. Kathy and I had experienced this together and wanted that particular question on the tests.


LOUISE BOHMER: Was that the end of the frightening events?

GEORGE LUTZ: No it was not the end of such events, however the danger here is blaming everything that goes wrong in ones life on evil. You cannot do that and really learn anything worthwhile. You cannot function in this world if your paranoia overwhelms your sensibilities. The real problems are discernment and patience....... and the impediment to beginning to learn how to endure is a lack of patience. I had a lot to learn about all this.... and still do work on this daily!

There did eventually come a time that the word frightening did not have the same meaning or strength as it once had for us. Faith was the only tool that undid the power that had inserted itself upon us. It has been said that Faith is the substance of things not seen.....I believe this to be a partial truth because I have also seen faith do and move and change things and act and create .....so at least for me faith is and has been so much more than just "believing"...it has also been expecting and even knowing at times.


LOUISE BOHMER: Ed and Lorraine Warren (prominent demonologists and psychic investigators) investigated the occurrences at the Ocean Avenue house, after you and your family left. They came to the conclusion that a demonic force was haunting the home. But what do you believe caused the terror in your home for those 28 days? Do you agree with the conclusion of it being the result of demonic forces or inhuman spirits? But what do you believe caused the terror in your home for those 28 days?

GEORGE LUTZ: I am asked to lecture on this occasionally and always the elusive nature of such phenomena is the interest of so many people from all walks of life. You must first try to understand that the easy answer......... "demonic forces or inhuman spirits" IS the answer, yet this is not a complete enough answer for you or me to help us to understand or learn anything of real value from just that for an answer..........more important to any understanding would be a catalog of observations, feelings, individual event descriptions containing as much detail as can be recalled and then a collation of all these for an examination of the effects of these events upon the individuals involved.

Once you start this process, you learn that common duplicate perspectives are at best, elusive. Each person involved will have a unique experience, and it is this singular and separate perspective that is difficult to define even to each other ....communication becomes excruciating....even if two or more, have a seemingly simultaneous experience..this compounds easily enough in "normal waking life" yet apparently accelerates in a psychic environment...this charged event will not create duplicate memories...and the effects of the event will be both personal and dissimilar......add to his description another "given" that begin to let you know just how difficult any accurate conclusion will become for you..........The "given" is a complete lack of knowledge, experience, vocabulary and tools or solutions...........and then a form of despair leads you to fear your own thoughts. You fear what others will think of you and you become very alone and separate. You begin to know that you do not know. Confusion now has grip you need real help to become free of.

Confusion is said to be the absence of God's presence and I promise you that confusion is only the beginning of what you are inundated with, once the process of being in the presence of true evil starts.


LOUISE BOHMER: Do you agree with the conclusion of it being the result of demonic forces or inhuman spirits?

GEORGE LUTZ: I have come to believe that what was there was multi faceted and multi talented ..........it was angry as a really obnoxious spoiled child might be when we wanted it to leave..........it had the ability to affect the lives of all it came into contact with.... it was deceitful and charming.........humorless and territorial.........intelligent and powerful..........yet in all that it also was threatened by the introduction of the religious or faith....it was vengeful at exposure and worked to create confusion and fed off of anger, guilt and greed and certainly fear........when exposed to love or truth it retreats only to wait for an opportunity to take revenge .........I learned that you do not ask someone to risk their own life to clear a property of such an entity........you can instead walk away and try to start over.

LOUISE BOHMER: Has anyone who has lived in the house since your family's departure experienced paranormal phenomenon of this same threatening level?

GEORGE LUTZ: Since we no longer live there, much of what I would answer here might easily be construed as rumor, yet divorce and money problems have continued to plague subsequent owners, (as they did prior to us) some have lost family and some have yelled about how awfully sad they are that their house has been maligned in some manner. There are pictures that have no reasonable explanation.......... why an arm suddenly becomes transparent......or a figure or figures appearing in windows at times and there was a story about a death from a fall off a ladder and another by drug overdose. I am told there are police reports as well, but have not seen them.

You asked also..."of this same threatening level?"

I have no way to know of this being the case here. I believe you are not a threat to this kind of phenomena if you do not believe in it and do not want to expose or displace it somehow..........that is not to say it will not choose to use you in some way if it finds you convenient or more to the point...or..it finds you interesting.


LOUISE BOHMER: Do you think you'll ever write a book telling your own truly personalized account of the terrifying occurrences you and your family experienced, during your stay at the Ocean Avenue home? Or, is the process of reliving those events, in order to chronicle them in print, to traumatizing for you to ever consider?

GEORGE LUTZ: I am currently working on a picture book of the way we left the house..........pictures taken during the investigation on March 6, 1976.........when that is finished, we will have an indication of the need or desire on the publics part for an idea similar to your question

We have often believed that the therapy is in the retelling...........you get over and past something like this by facing it and dealing with it............yet to describe the process is to usually be found wanting for a better way of communicating the difficulties one encounters...........through the years the reliving has become less severe ......that is to say that there are still some buttons that can be reached and cause for alarm because of the intensity of the experience.........sometimes it is momentary and passes quickly.........but I learned in an interview only a couple of years ago that if the right person asks the right question..( at the right time I suppose as well)..a whole flood of emotion can revive itself and .as you say......the trauma of reliving can still rear its ugly head........I have had to learn to be wary of the process, yet embrace it as well since it has been much more relieving than reliving.


LOUISE BOHMER: After experiencing such a terrifying paranormal phenomenon, have you been contacted by, or helped, others who've been through a similar supernatural occurrence?

GEORGE LUTZ: Yes to both parts of your question. I do not speak of these in public because they are confidential.

LOUISE BOHMER: Hans Holzer (professor of paranormal psychology, author of many occult books) also visited 112 Ocean Avenue, in 1977, with a medium. The medium claimed the malevolent haunting was the result of the ghost of an angry Indian Chief, who refuses to leave the house until it is destroyed. Do you think there is any truth to this medium's claim?

GEORGE LUTZ: The medium, Ethel Johnson Meyers, is known to be both gifted and honest. I personally do not have any reason to doubt that the recounting of what she experienced was..for her... invalid in any way. Not all psychics will access all areas of information or sources of phenomena available at ANY site in one single visit....or even series of visits.........so while her investigation could never be deemed to be complete........it should certainly not be discounted either ..........It probably would be more accurate to say that this was part of the whole.......another facet of the forces within that were available to touched or learned about and described ...that day...under the conditions present. I have learned that even under the best conditions, when you try to investigate, understand, and describe this kind of malevolent force, real truth will be so elusive, it may never be possible to "map" its abilities and purpose.......let alone its characteristics.........human terms do not always apply.

LOUISE BOHMER: How did these traumatizing events affect your life in later years? Were you terrified this might happen to you again when you purchased another home?

GEORGE LUTZ: I am sorry but this question probably requires a book for an answer........and even then it would undoubtedly be inadequate and incomplete.........I cannot even do a ...."suffice it to say............" in any reasonable length or series of paragraphs and then feel I have somehow said what all would need to be at least touched upon........One way to describe this would be that it is still a process I am learning from and learning about.

We experienced something I would wish on no one ever for any reason.

The fact that this is not as rare as you and I might want to believe it is ......does not change anything. These things happen and for the most part people will not try to explain them because of the notoriety that sets you apart. The fear of ridicule has never been an issue for me because I understand at least some of the ignorance that accompanies the need to ridicule. My fear is that I will leave out the message that will help someone that truly is in need. My fear is that I will not communicate the serious nature of these kinds of events in a way that is both respectful of the reader and the material itself. I dislike the fact that I cannot meet with those that are truly interested in such phenomena in person and at least have a chance to impart what little I have gleaned from all this so that their own quest for knowledge is helped somehow. I have to admit a selfish part to this as well.........I usually learn from others in ways that take me years to start to comprehend and I value that learning in large ways.

I was leading a quiet life repairing old cars and doing my own studies on the subject of this interview when the internet came along. For the most part I was in private life and rarely spoke of the past to all but my closest friends. The internet brought with it a mentality that you can say what you want and you do not have to be responsible for it..........because you are anonymous......... I went back to school to learn about computers......... to build them and repair them and then to protect them ......and finally learn computer forensics because the internet also brought a viciousness to some people.

I have had some fears to deal with.........I still am not too happy with heights. I have learned allot about what motivates people..........I have seen what we call the "amityville bug" infect people with greed and meanness beyond comprehension..........and I have been most fortunate in ways that have nothing to do with material wealth or fame of some kind. I do not think it is the events themselves that continue to affect you .........I think it is how you come to handle their memory.....this probably has more to do with what you want out of life than you have ever tried to explain for and to yourself. I had to learn some very hard lessons along the way these last 30 years or so.........but who has not?.....I think the effect you are looking for in your question applies to everyone....Shattered dreams are not so easily rebuilt because the hurt has too long a lingering sensation....unless you decide it aint much of a life without some more dreams.....being truly terrified distorts your reality in a way that alienates you from almost everyone else...unless you decide to work to change the perspective that you had created.......I still continue to take people at their word and extend them trust that I should let them earn first...........but for me I am most fortunate in that I have a few people I know are my friends because if I had a body to bury.......they would bring their own shovel to help with.


LOUISE BOHMER: Were you terrified this might happen to you again when you purchased another home?

GEORGE LUTZ: Not so terrified as concerned.........terrified implies an extreme and I do not think we were terrified that this might happen again..... because we had so much help....real help that put some very important basics into our personal belief systems ....concerned however implies.......caution......and we certainly tried to be careful ........we ruled out even looking at any properties where someone had died......no matter what the cause........for the longest time new houses were our preference.

LOUISE BOHMER: Do you feel the catalyst for the threatening paranormal phenomenon could've been the blessing Father Pecararo performed on the home, perhaps aggravating or stirring the negative force that inhabited the house and grounds? Do you think the force would have manifested itself as aggressively if the blessing had not taken place?

GEORGE LUTZ: YES.

LOUISE BOHMER: Do you think the force would have manifested itself as aggressively if the blessing had not taken place?

GEORGE LUTZ: I do believe it would have been more subtle.........in less of a hurry.......it would have allowed us years to erode our values for each other and the basic rules of life......In one sense it would know no other way to be other than aggressive...it is the very nature within it that compels such behavior.........but it would have relished the "game" of our undoing and pleasured itself along the way by feasting upon the fears and confusion it would have helped to create. Our emotions would have fed it a great deal of energy and entertainment.

BUT............the blessing did take place and no matter what anyone or anything else may think......the blessing "took" and continues to grant us each a form of grace with each new day.........of this I am certain and on this I continue to depend and expect and dream.


LOUISE BOHMER: Thank you for this exclusive interview, Mr. Lutz. It's been a pleasure.



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