By now, you have probably heard of this chilling 911 call. If you haven’t listened to it yet, turn on your speakers and prepare for a good retro cryptozoology case. This incident happened on the Kitsap Peninsula, Washington State, in 1996. We thought it’d be interesting to analyze it.
The sheriffs showed up, but they weren’t able to find any evidence of the animal on the property. Other than the location, there is little background about the man reporting the sighting.
1 – We don’t know the time of the year when this call happened, which would be helpful to determine the possibility of the beast being a bear.
2 – The man sounds sober. Making an unnecessary 911 call could place you in jail. The person on the phone sounds serious enough and genuinely scared. Compare it to the North Carolina 911 call that happened in 2010.
3 – The caller explains his dog had been killed “recently”. However, there was no evidence of such incident once the officers arrived. The question is, why wait days until reporting the death of his dog?
4 – He clearly states that there is a man in his backyard. Then he hesitates and suggests it could be “a thing” or “a big man dressed in black”. We are assuming it is night time, so it is possible that the man misidentified the creature, whatever it was.
5 – He seems reluctant to call it a Bigfoot, as though he feared the 911 operator would immediately dismiss the call as a prank.
Based solely on these five points and the little evidence that can be gathered from the audio, this call appears to be genuine.
The subject placing the call believed there was something –or someone– in his backyard. But what, or who? It is safe to assume that a criminal, or a neighbor with a grudge, would go to that extent and kill the man’s dog in order to gain access to the house, or to take revenge on a personal matter (that would explain the black clothing). Another possibility is that this was a prankster walking on stilts, which would explain for the abnormal height, and that the dog’s death was unrelated to the sighting.
Today, Bigfoot sightings are reported more often than ever before, perhaps due to video cameras being built in mobile phones. In 1996, most people didn’t use the internet the way we use it today; only a few had access to it, video cameras were owned by a few lucky individuals, and the media chose the stories they wanted to be on the nightly news. Nowadays, you can upload a video file in just a few seconds and share a sighting with the world. No news outlet doctoring needed, no editing. All original. Of course, this also brings a common problem that it was way easier to circumvent in the past than it is now: Hoaxes.
The digital era has been good and bad to the cryptozoology field; good because we receive sighting reports daily. Bad because 99% of them are hoaxes.
If you could go back in time to the day the Patterson footage was filmed, and offered them to use high definition camera instead of , do you think they’d have used it? To this day, no one has been able to determine whether that footage is real or fake, at least not scientifically. Regardless of what you have read about the Patterson’s death bed confession, he never admitted to faking the sighting. The confession was related to a different matter. Researchers and skeptics alike base their own conclusions based on their personal feelings and beliefs. But the fact of the matter is that this dichotomy only exists because of the low quality of the original film. Video experts have tried enhancing it, frame by frame, but that hasn’t helped much. There is a reason why most cryptid sightings today are recorded in low quality video. I know you know what I mean, because that’s the first thing readers complain about as soon as a new footage comes to light.
So, what do you think? Was there a real Bigfoot in the man’s backyard in 1996?
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