Updated: August 18, 2009
A fascinating person I've researched regarding the topic of Psychic Detectives has been that of Dorothy Allison. I want to recap Psychic Detective Dorothy Allison's best cases and explain why I personally feel there is great research worthy significance in the anomalous veridical details that she provided in these particular cases, and also tackle some common Debunker Explanations of these same cases which frequently OMIT very important veridical information that Dorothy provided in these cases.
I'll present the cases of hers I find most crucial, and then deal with criticisms of hers I've read from debunker sources.
I'll start with the most significant (to me) case of Dorothy Allison. Where the father of a murdered teenage girl followed Dorothy's clues to a marsh area location over 30 miles away from their home, found all of the specific clues that Dorothy gave her at this location (including a big rock with the letters MAR written on it in big red letters), and then brought Dorothy Allison there. She told him, "this is the place, your daughter is here, you have to get the police". The police wouldn't listen to them (still treating her case as a runaway). Several months later, a group of teenagers found her body in a water hole in the exact same area they were searching, in visible sight of ALL of the clues Dorothy had mentioned.
Detailed Information on this Case:
On May 15, 1976, a 14 year old teenage girl named Susan Jacobson disappeared shortly after leaving her home. Her parents went to the police, who simply wrote her off as a runaway, and told them that they had neither the time nor manpower to search for an obvious runaway. The parents heard of Psychic Dorothy Allison by reputation, and arranged her to meet them at their home, after the police refused to take their daughter's disappearance seriously. Here are the highlights of this particular case...
* In the case of this murdered girl: The numbers she got, 2562 being the daughter's birthday, 405 being the time the daughter was born. She named her boyfriend (got the right name) and stated that she had been strangled by her boyfriend (he was later convicted of it). She got a vision of the place her body was to be found (a marsh area), the word MAR written in Big Red Letters on a Rock (her exact words) found within 100 yards of the body (in plain visual sight from where her body was dumped), Smell of Oil (she was found in an oil drum), and 222 connected with the Smell of Oil (being Numbers on the Oil Drum that she was found in), she was in water but didn't drown (she was in a water hole in the oil drum), and a number of other visual clues all found within 100 yards of the body in plain visual sight (two sets of church steeples, dual smoke stacks, a broken down car, in a marsh area, etc).
As for the debunkers on this particular case ...
They are mostly silent. The Debunker Skeptic Articles will often only mention that Dorothy and her Clues did not directly locate the body (true), will leave out ALL Veridical Hits on this Case, (except sometimes they will mention one very weak one, where Dorothy supposeably mentioned a "bridal path of horses" [which I can't find mentioned in any source on her on this case], which connects to the cemetary where she was later buried, and TOTALLY OMIT the more interesting veridical hits.)
In OMITTING the veridical information Dorothy got on the case, they've left out the most interesting aspects of the case, the most intruiging being, that her own father followed Dorothy's clues to the *exact location* where his daughter's body was later found, over 30 miles away, as well as the information I previously mentioned.
Now the second case of hers I'll present is her very first one, which is almost as good as the one I listed above ...
On December 3rd 1967, a little boy was playing with his brother along the riverbank, and disappeared. Dorothy Allison had a vision of the boy drowning and being caught in a pipe, a full two hours before the incident happened. She later contacted the police, who were very skeptical, but upon describing the little boy and the clothing he was wearing the morning of his disappearance exactly, information that had not been released to the public (no photo of the little boy had been released to the public either), they decided to take her insights seriously in an open-minded way. Here are the highlights of this particular case...
* In this case the entire description of the drowned child was accurate in each and every detail and layer of clothing (not made available to the public), including the religious metal pin on the third undershirt and that his under shoes would be found on the wrong feet (this even the parents didn't know). She also saw that when he would be found his hands would be caked with mud, which they were, and that when he fell in the water, was distracted by a paint can, which his brother who was there confirmed, but his parents didn't know. All sorts of numerous visual location information being within visual sight of the body, (that he would be found behind a school, with a lumber mill nearby, gold painting on a door near by, a parking lot and an ITT factory nearby, etc, all were within plain visual sight of the body when and where it was found), and the biggest that he would specifically be found on February 7th, and a high significance that was put on the number 120 would be solved on that date as well (police detectives interviewed stated that they had written these clues down three months before it happened, the exact date and time), and he was indeed found on February 7th, at 1:20 in the afternoon.
As for the debunkers on this particular case ...
In the missing child who drowned case from 1967, what the Debunkers usually state is that she did not locate the body herself (true), that her clues did not *directly* lead to the discovery of the body (again, true), point out that a man looking to bury his cat discovered the body (true), and then point out that Dorothy "wasted their time" digging up a drainage pipe "she said contained the boy" that didn't contain the boy (half-true, distorted information), and then count the entire case a total miss. (While OMITTING all of the dazzle shot hits she DID get right on the case.)
Examining the veridical hits I posted earlier, it's clear that by OMITTING this information out of the equation entirely, they've left out very significant, very interesting information she got on this case.
Also, the information they present regarding the drainage pipe search for the boy was a bit inaccurate. What actually occured, was Dorothy Allison had a vision of the boy's body inside of a drainage pipe that had unique cracks all inside of it, and had a vision of him being sucked out of the drainage pipe. She asked the police to search the drainage pipes in the park, because it might not be too late, that he could still be inside of it.
All of the pipes in the park did not looked cracked (at least from the outside) like the one she saw in the vision. But, she had a gut feeling that "that one!" (she pointed at one) was the one. They opened up the pipe, and it WAS the pipe in her vision, it had the same unique cracks all inside of it. (And, it was the *ONLY* drainage pipe in the entire park that was cracked inside, even the maintanace guy was unaware of it.) But the boy's body was no longer there. That's the full story of the pipe incident that debunkers don't mention.
On December 20, 1974 a businessman got aboard a train to travel, but no one saw him get off of it at it's stop. He simply disappeared. Rumors circulated that he had embezzled and vanished, or run off with a mistress, they simply couldn't find the guy. So the police, knowing the reputation of Dorothy Allison, contacted her asking for her help. The police wrote down everything she said, a full three months before his body was discovered. Here are the highlights of this perticular case ...
* In this case of a man who went missing on a train, she saw that he had actually fallen from the train into the water (she said he thought he was at his stop, walked out, and fell into the water below), even though police suspected he had embezzled or ran off with a mistress. The Bow and Arrow significance she got which was how his body was discovered (a son and father were shooting arrows with a bow over the river, when a stray arrow from their shooting above the riverbank missed it's target and landed right next to his corpse below on the riverbank, they called the authorities.) That there was a row of tires up on a sleded hill next to the area where the body was found where children played (which was fully accurate), and the 222 clue given by Dorothy as significant in this case was February 22, the exact date the body was found.
* Other Clues She Gave On This Case: She said 166 was as significant in this case as 222 and was unrelated to 222 (the date he was found). There was an old tugboat permanently stationed below the very section of bridge (near Lyndhurst Station) he fell off from on the train, on it's side, was painted in very large numbers, 166. She also said she saw "two guys" were significant to the case. These would be the two people who discovered the body.
As for the debunkers and this case, I haven't seen a single mention of this case, it's totally omitted.
Famous Cases ...
* That the Son of Sam killer would be caught because of a Parking Ticket, such an obscure foreseen detail, not to mention the Accurate Portrait of the Killer that she drew.
* That Patty Hearst would bond with her kidnappers and rob a bank with them, not to mention her pinpointing locations where she was previously held. (When they checked these locations, she was no longer there, they had moved, but it was later revealed after she was found that they had actually been there previously.)
* She was also questioned about a missing body in the John Wayne Gacy case, which she said would be found floating in the river at a certain *specific* bridge, and even gave the exact time and day. (Like in the child's case.)
As for the Skeptics on these three cases, only the Patty Hearst and Gacy cases get mentioned criticized by debunkers ...
One skeptic article has the father of Patty Hearst talking about how she did not locate his daughter, and the Debunkers making a big deal out of his statements, and suggesting that the Patty Hearst case was a complete miss. They, however ignored Dorothy's prediction that she would bond with her kidnappers and rob a bank with them, and that she pinpointed locations that they had been, but were no longer there by the time they searched there.
One Skeptic Article I read states that on the Gacy Murders, she merely led the police on a "wild goose chase" with absolutely nothing of substance. This was inaccurate...
She predicted the exact time and day that one of the bodies of the young men murdered by Gacy would be found (one that was not in the house, that was still missing), and she stated that his body would specifically be found floating down a river NEXT TO A SPECIFIC BRIDGE when it was discovered. ALL of these details were correct, the exact time and date the body was found (like in the little boy's case) and he was discovered floating down a river NEXT TO A SPECIFIC BRIDGE. (She even named which bridge it was.)
These are several MISC cases of hers I find interesting ...
* In March of 1991, accurately picking up that a girl in the area would be dismembered, encased in cement, dumped in a specific lake, with one body part sticking out of the cement, shortly before it happened. And another girl in the general area would be found nude, strangled, covered with brush, and placed near running water. (And was, in June 1991.) Both before they happened, one several months before it happened. (Interesting thing about that case, was that she was initially there trying to pick up a *different* murder victim in that area. She got nothing on that original victim, but instead picked up information on a *separate* killing that *had not happened yet*.)
* That she would die shortly before her 75th birthday of heart disease (made In 1990), and did just one month short of her 75th birthday (died In 1999).
* In the murders of two girls, she saw the word "Silvermead", and a row of mobile homes, and the name Goldstein. When the two girls' bodies were found, they were found less than half a mile from Silvermead Trailer Park, which is owned by a man named Mr. Goldstein.
* "Chief DeLitta of the Nutley police said she had been helpful on many occasions, citing a 1993 bludgeoning murder. Among Ms. Allison's correct predictions were double letters in the names of the suspect and a street that figured in the case, the occupation of the suspect's father, and the facts that the suspect lived in a garden apartment next to a yellow house and that one of his car's headlights was out.
She also said the murder weapon would be found in a river. The weapon was never found, but the man convicted of the crime later admitted throwing it in the river, the chief said." - New York Times Article on Dorothy Allison
* She saw the name Richard or Robert, with a middle name of Lee or Leroy, with something to do with shoes or shoemaking, an accomplice, and a dead nurse. These clues haunted her, and she repeated these to police over and over, as a case to look into. An unsolved case involving a dead nurse soon turned up, and eventually turned out to have been done by a Richard Lee Dodson, who was a shoemaker by trade, who had an accomplice.
An elderly Alzheimer's patient disappeared from a nursing home. Dorothy Allison was called into the case.
* Dorothy said he was near a wooded area, where there are caves, near a mountain. She also said the Number 5 is significant.
* He was found in a wooded area, near a copper mine, near a mountain, 2.5 miles from the nursing home. And the only house on the road he was found dead on, was house number 5. (The house number on the house was 5.)
Dorothy Allison met the director of the Unsolved Mysteries episode that she was interviewed in, and upon seeing the woman with him who would later become his wife, she pointed to her and said to her...
* 3/27! 3/27! (March 27th is her birthday.)
* The woman asked Dorothy if there is anything she should look out for. Dorothy told her that her husband is going to have a heart attack. (That same day, hours later, her ex-husband had a heart attack. This hit was slightly misdirected, as he was once her husband, but wasn't at the time. It was the ex-husband, not the current one, that had the heart attack.)
Those are the cases (in order I listed) that I find the most intriguing from greatest to least.
Now, of course, to be totally fair and honest, there ARE a number of cases where Dorothy Allison investigated and DID NOT get ANYTHING of value on a particular case, (or information that was far too vague to count as hits), and even cases where she got INACCURATE INFORMATION and OUTRIGHT MISSES when she tuned into certain cases.
This is not disputed. These exist, you can find mention of them online and in books. For Example...
* A case of a boy who ran away from home and joined a religious cult, whom she said was dead, but who was actually later found alive is one example of a clear miss. Nevertheless, the Police Detective on the case said that Dorothy was shockingly correct about most of the information given on this case. (She herself claimed she misinterpreted what she was seeing in regards to the boy's death, and that the "death" imagery she got was symbolic of his "spiritual death" as he had forsaken his former self entirely and joined a religious cult.)
*A case where she said a teenage boy would be found dead in a flooded basement, but whom was actually later found dead outdoors, on the other side of town, is another example of a clear miss.
* In the Atlanta Child Murders Case, she famously gave out 42 names of possibly suspects, none of which matched either of the actual suspects.
* She got information wrong on the Jon Benet Ramsey case. She drew a portrait of the killer which turned out to be a fairly accurate portrait of the guy who was arrested (then later released) just a few years ago (a few years after Dorothy died) in suspicion of the case, but he was later cleared of any wrongdoing. So, he didn't do it, but Dorothy seemed to have picked up on the guy. Misdirected hit perhaps? (I've also seen arguments by Skeptics that although the portrait resembles Karr, there are features noticeably off that indicate it can't be matched to Karr at all.)
Even the book "Dorothy Allison: A Psychic Story" gives a number of her known misses as well as her known hits. It gives cases where she got valuable information, and cases where she did not. These are not hidden. Even Dorothy Allison herself mentioned this in her Unsolved Mysteries interview. About this book I mentioned (long out of print and a good source on her) ...
"Material for this book was gathered from several sources. Dorothy's own retelling of the stories has been supported by newspaper and magazine articles and signed affidavits from many of the parties involved. In most cases, the families of the victims have cooperated fully, regardless of the fact that the interviews stirred unpleasent memories. Many of the law-enforcement officers involved have also given generously of their time in recounting their experiences with the psychic detective." - Scott Jacobson in Foreward to 'Dorothy Allison: A Psychic Story'
There are a number of intriguing cases in this book that I don't have listed, and some of the cases I do have listed have additional information that I need to eventually update with in this book.
That she got certain cases wrong, off, or inaccurate is known and not hidden, the bigger questioned that should be asked is, "Does she have very good cases that stand up to scrutiny where the veridical data she presented is both unexplainable, specific, veridical, highly significant, and could have led them to the body if they interpreted it correctly in time?" And that answer is yes.
I recently found an online video of the interview that Dorothy Allison AND the Police Detectives she worked gave on an episode of Unsolved Mysteries, where it profiled several of her best cases. Here is the Unsolved Mysteries Episode on Dorothy Allison, it's in six parts, and isn't very good video quality (since it's so old), but I highly recommend watching them all, in order, as they present several of her best cases. I'm glad I stumbled across this ...