FROM THE DAILY MAIL ...
Psychics and mediums are not something the police wish to talk about. It’s their guilty little secret.
The police take pride in solving crimes using rational detective work and forensic science. When quizzed, they prefer to talk about DNA fingerprinting and high-tech surveillance rather than the help they receive from beyond the grave.
But the Daily Mail has learned that the police are increasingly turning to psychics and mediums for help in their battle against crime. Sources in the National Criminal Intelligence Service say that officers turn to mediums to help them solve the more difficult cases. There is even a database containing the names of ‘official’ psychics that officers can tap into 24 hours a day.
These psychics have helped the authorities solve murders and trace missing persons. They have also helped the innocent walk free from jail.
The respected Journal of the Society for Psychical Research recently published an amazing account of a vicious murder that was solved when the victim’s spirit returned to earth to guide detectives from the Metropolitan Police. Guy Lyon Playfair and Montague Keen, the researchers behind the paper, say that it is the first ever case to be proved beyond all reasonable doubt.
The medium Christine Holohan says that the spirit of Jacqui Poole was angry and bitter. The 25-year-old had been beaten and strangled to death three days previously. The killer wasn’t even on the police shortlist of suspects and seemed destined to get away with it.
But the spirit of Jacqui Poole was having none of it. She wanted justice. On February 14 1983, three days after being murdered, Jacqui contacted the police through the psychic Christine Holohan.
“I’d had an uneasy feeling building up all weekend,” says Christine. “I’d heard about the murder of Jacqui Poole and I was uneasy about it.
“I was in bed but couldn’t rest. Something was keeping me awake. Then I felt a tugging at my bedclothes and realised that there was a woman trying to get my attention. All I could see was the white outline of a person tinged with a burning white energy.
“I thought it might be the murdered girl so I said to the spirit: ‘Jacqui, is that you?’ The lights flickered on and off.”
“I heard a clear voice in my ear. She wanted me to go to the police and help her get justice. I told her that I’d need some concrete evidence otherwise the police wouldn’t believe me. Jacqui started swearing vehemently about the murderer – the air was blue with it - and then she left. I was shaken but I hoped she’d return.”
The next evening the spirit of Jacqui did return and began revealing details of the murder, the killer and the layout of her flat in London where she was killed. Jacqui went into incredible detail, pointing out such things as the position of two cups in the kitchen - one had been washed-up, whilst the other still had some coffee in it.
She also described in minute detail a black address book, a letter and a doctor’s prescription. Jacqui then took Christine’s mind back to the murder scene and replayed the attack in horrific, cinematic detail.
“She re-lived the whole scene of the murder and showed me what happened,” says Christine. “It was utterly terrifying, watching through her eyes as this man strangled her. I saw his hands go round her throat and pull the cord tight. The vision haunted me for years. I suffered from depression for a long time afterwards.”
Christine saw Jacqui being thrown around the bathroom and dragged into the living room. She experienced Jacqui’s terror and bitter anger. Finally, she felt the life drain out of her and saw Jacqui’s body slowly cooling on the floor of her flat.
“Jacqui kept on showing me freeze-frame pictures of the scene and all I could do was write it down,” says Christine. “I then took the story to the police, not expecting them to believe me.”
Christine was right. At first the police thought she was deluded. Detective Constable Tony Batters, a member of the Metropolitan Police’ squad investigating the case, says he was initially “completely sceptical”.
“I had been the first officer on the scene,” he says. “I remained there for many hours. Christine could not have seen it but she managed to described it just as I found it, including the victim’s position, clothing and injuries. She gave us extraordinarily accurate details about the murder scene.
“She knew that in the course of robbing Jacqui, the killer had left behind two of the many rings she always wore. She also knew that Jacqui was undergoing a divorce, that she was suffering from depression, that she had just been given a prescription by her doctor, that she had not intended to be at home on the evening that she died, but felt unwell, and that two men had called at her door on innocent business, just before the murder.”
To further convince the detectives, she told one of them, Detective Sergeant Andrew Smith, three deeply personal facts that only he was aware of. Each one proved unnervingly accurate. On being told, DS Smith turned white and began to shake.
After she’d convinced the two detectives, Christine then descri
bed the killer in great detail, his age and month of birth, his height, skin and hair colour, his tattoos, the type of work he did, and mentioned his criminal history. In total, of the 130 verifiable facts revealed by Christine, 120 have since proved to be entirely accurate.
Christine then revealed that the killer’s name was ‘Pokie’ - the nick name of Anthony Ruark, a local petty criminal.
"It was absolutely spine-chilling,” says DC Batters. “We'd already interviewed Ruark but at that moment I knew we'd got our man."
But it was not to be - Pokie Ruark had a cast-iron alibi. Try as they might, the police could not pick holes in it. They questioned and re-questioned everyone he came into contact with and anyone who may be able to undermine his alibi. They even dug up his garden in a desperate bid to see if he’d buried any evidence.
Ruark’s alibi stood rock-solid. At least, thought the officers, Christine’s testimony had allowed them to move much faster and more thoroughly than would normally have been the case. As a result, they had gathered crucial evidence that might prove useful when forensic technology caught up with Christine’s psychic abilities. It was a grim hope, but hope nonetheless.
Eighteen years later Ruark’s alibi finally fall apart. Scientists had recently developed a new way of fingerprinting DNA from the tiniest traces of blood, skin and semen. The evidence gathered as a result of Christine’s guidance could finally be put to the test. It proved to be conclusive. Ruark was convicted of murdering Jacqui Poole in August 2001.
Without Christine’s psychic help, says Batters, the defence team would have been able to muddy the waters sufficiently for the jury to return a not guilty verdict.
Batters says: “I’ve accepted the fact that Jacqui communicated with Christine. As a result, Christine played a significant, albeit anonymous, part in Ruark’s conviction.”
Understandably, perhaps, the police do not normally discuss their paranormal exploits in public lest it make them appear unreliable and irrational. However, it is sufficiently common for there to be ‘unofficial’ guidelines in the use of mediums.
Senior officers, for example, are schooled in the use of psychics. Detective Inspector Philip Kent, of the Metropolitan Police, says that during his Senior Investigating Officer Training the pros and cons of psychics were discussed.
Central to this training is the manner in which paranormal evidence should be treated. Clearly, the evidence of departed spirits is not admissible in court so information provided by mediums should be treated only as tentative leads. Officers should then go and track down forensic evidence and corroborating witnesses to back up their case.
Psychics should be viewed as unconventional witnesses, as just one piece of a jigsaw that builds up over time. They are at their best when they are used as part of a general intelligence gathering exercise, says Keith Charles, a medium and retired police officer. Psychics are useful, he says, but they cannot always be relied upon to produce concrete results.
Despite these drawbacks, the paranormal is taken seriously by those in the higher echelons of police forces around the country. But again, senior officers do not like to publicise their beliefs.
A fine example is to be found at the National Crime and Operations Centre Faculty in Hampshire. It is here, quietly and out of the public gaze, that a database of officially approved psychics is steadily being built-up.
The Faculty is backed by the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Home Office Crime and Policing Group. Any officer in the country can call up the Faculty’s helpline 24 hours a day and obtain a list of spiritual mediums.
Even the National Criminal Intelligence Service has begun to use psychics. One source told the Daily Mail: “You see these big tough detectives with years of service behind them and occasionally, when you’ve got them alone they will admit that they use psychics. It’s not something they wish to promote.
“They like the image of rationality, of solving crime using science, but in reality they will use psychics if it helps catch a criminal. They’ll never admit in public but yes the police do use psychics.”
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