Ghost hunting in Jerome, Ariz.

Ghost hunting in Jerome, Ariz.

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JEROME, Ariz. -

The new Fox drama "Sleepy Hollow" debuted on FOX 10 Monday. It's based on Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" -- about an area in upstate New York famous for its haunting atmosphere and headless horseman.

But Arizona has its own haunted hot spots.

One such place is Jerome, an hour and a half drive northwest of the valley.

"People report hearing lady voices, being touched, being scratched," said Richard Johnson, Jerome tour guide.

Our first stop in downtown Jerome -- the Connor Hotel built in 1898. Richard Johnson from Ghost Town Tours was our guide.

"People have seen a man in a Victorian jacket and a bowler hat, that was the fashion of men with wealth in the early 1900s."

A team of paranormal investigators joined us for a visit inside the Connor. Renee Bermudez is a local psychic.

"She's here waiting and hoping the person she is waiting for will eventually come and rescue her," said Bermudez.

And Terri Stanley is a Jerome spirit seeker.

"In the hallway I always feel negative energy like fear," said Stanley.

The Connor was full of guests when we arrived. And according to our team -- not all of them flesh and blood.

"I know there is something beyond the floor I am always getting high ratings from there."

"You hear a lot of ‘help me' in this town, a lot of that's because life back then wasn't easy at all," said Bermudez.

"I can feel it there is something here, I am recording now and maybe pick up an EVP," said Stanley.

Stanley carries a digital recorder she hopes will capture an EVP, which stands for Electronic Voice Phenomenon. Recorded sounds that some claim, come from beyond the grave.

"I got a 102 EVPs on a three hour tour."

Terri recorded a few while we were in a room at the Connor. Listen closely -- it sounds like someone whispers, "tell them."

Here it is, three more times:

"Tell them, tell them, tell them."

Did you hear it? Not everyone can. But you can clearly hear one of these.

Everyone on the team carries an EMF meter. Popular on ghost hunting shows, some believe EMF meters detect energy from those who have passed.

But they also beep near power lines and electronic equipment.

"What we are using is a scanner that will detect out of the white noise and bring their voices to us," said Jerry Wills.

At sunset we visit the cemetery in Jerome, with Jerry Wills, who holds another ghost hunting tool.

"What you are hearing is this device scanning through all the white noise frequencies trying to establish a voice."

Now living in Jerome too -- you may remember Jerry Wills.

He's a well-known intuitive healer who says he uses life energy fields to heal -- the same energy fields some believe are left behind when someone dies.

"These people lived here and they died here working in these mines, working in these hills."

The cemetery isn't on anyone's tour. The barren, rocky hill is now protected from grave robbers. But a few headstones remain.

On this night the graveyard ghosts weren't very talkative.

"If you are there say something to us."

But the town's tragic past is well preserved here. Death from fire, mine accidents, and disease was common.

"Many of these stones, these headstones that you see out here in this old old cemetery are from children that died."

Scott Perin lives with the results of Jerome's tragic past.

"I've been up here about 18 years now," said Scott Perin.

He's seen what was left behind when the population dropped from the thousands to just 20 after the mine was closed.

"You go into some of the abandoned houses, there are still dishes in the table, clothes in the closets, food in the pantry."

He believes some people who have passed on are still here too.

"I feel them and I accept that they are there."

"There's just a weird creepy feeling here," said Wills.

Night comes early to Jerome, and we save the best for last.

"Typically they would come here and never leave alive."

The Jerome mental asylum.

"This is where people either had gone mad or poisoned or whatever, they were mentally not right."

This time holding an EMF meter, Wills checks the building's electrical panel to test it. It's normal. But right away, Jerry knows something isn't right.

Then, the EMF meter picks up something else.

"This is really interesting."

The lights flash brightly on the meter as Wills starts asking questions.

"I get the idea you want to leave, is that right? Ah yes, bumped it up to the red so that means yes."

Whether or not we had a visitor outside the asylum that night, most who still live in Jerome are sure of at least one thing. Their town is still a ghost town.

"They still have business and they don't know how to resolve it and I think that's why there are quite a few who are still here."

 

For more information visit

www.ghosttowntours.org

www.toursofjerome.com

www.jerrywills.com or www.xpeditionstv.com

www.jeromehistoricalsociety.com

www.azjerome.com

 

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