The events that took place in the infamous house.
‘The Amityville Horror’ is a famous book, film and real life story that has left countless people guessing over the past thirty years. The story can be divided into two famous episodes; the murder of the De Feo family and the haunting of the Lutz family some months later. The murder of the De Feo family is unarguably true; the haunting of the Lutz, more controversial. However, both are dark, disturbing and leave many unanswered questions.
Both of these stories begin on the evening of November 13th 1974 when Ronald (Butch) De Feo Jr entered Henry’s bar claiming that his parents had been shot. Bobby Kelske and five other men drove to the De Feo residence in a state of high agitation yet still unprepared for the true horror that was to greet them there. The men discovered not only the bodies of the parents in their bed, Ronald’s mother covered as if she were sleeping, but also the bodies of De Feo’s younger brothers aged 9 and 18. They immediately called 911.
After the police arrived two more bodies were discovered; Butch’s 13 and 15 year old sisters bringing the total body count to six. The entire family apart from one member. All had been shot in their sleep, in their own beds. The remaining living member of the family, 23 year old Ronald De Feo Jr was charged with their murders on December 4th.
No clear reason has ever been given for the murders of the De Feo family. Ronald De Feo Jr himself confessed but his story has changed several times over the years leaving no clear, discernible truth. At trial, he claimed insanity blaming voices in his head for driving him to commit these murders. The psychiatrist for the prosecution claimed that despite an anti-social personality disorder, De Feo was aware of his actions and De Feo himself later said he was angry with doubts cast over his sanity at this time, leaving this defence looking extremely unreliable.
Butch De Feo has since claimed that he, two friends and his sister Dawn conspired to commit the murders. There is strong evidence to support the claim that more than one person was responsible for the deaths; no-one was sedated but no-one woke up. Each person was killed by one or two bullet wounds. A gun fired would certainly have awoken other people in the house. Powder burns, consistent with firing a gun, were also found on Dawn’s nightgown.