- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 7, 2004

CHESTERTOWN, Md. (AP) — The word “ghost” is hot on the lips of Kent County Courthouse employees.

A new $75,000 security system installed July 1 hasn’t caught any criminals, but it did capture some haunting images of what appears to be a strange light “walking” in one stairwell.

“It didn’t show up to the eye, but it showed up on tape,” said security officer Phillip Price.

Security personnel first saw the light while looking at a surveillance tape recorded July 29, and it appeared live for more than an hour the next day.

After noticing the light, Mr. Price walked up the stairs and didn’t see a thing. But downstairs, where by then a crowd of employees had gathered to watch, the video monitor revealed the strange light moving ahead of Mr. Price, stopping when he stopped and starting when he started.

At one point, those watching the video feed saw Mr. Price walk through the anomaly, they said. That was about the time that Mr. Price said he felt something.

“I felt a real chill, I will tell you that,” Mr. Price said.

This time of year, the courthouse stairway is warm and muggy, and Mr. Price said he doesn’t have much time for ghosts.

Officials in this Eastern Shore town are still trying to find a scientific explanation for the anomaly, such as dust spots on the camera lens or a malfunctioning battery. A digital copy of the data has been sent to Atlantic Security, the firm that installed the cameras.

Kent County Sheriff John F. Price said he doesn’t believe in ghosts.

“There has to be a logical explanation,” he said, adding, “I’m keeping an open mind.”

Employees said they have seen odd shadows and heard unexplained noises, including the sound of closing doors when no one else was around.

For those who believe in the paranormal, the image on the courthouse security camera is described by the Maryland Ghost and Spirit Association as an “orb,” which some believe represents the soul of a person who has died.

If that’s true, there could be dozens of explanations, as the courthouse has been the site of executions dating back to 1746. A 1969 expansion was built over a forgotten 19th-century cemetery.

“If it is a ghost, it’s a friendly ghost,” said Mark Mumford, clerk of the circuit court. “If it’s a friendly ghost, it’s not hurting me.”

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide