The new horror movie “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It,” which opens in theaters on Friday and on HBO Max, recalls a strange event: the first time an American pleaded not guilty to a crime for being inhabited. by an evil spirit.
Arne Cheyenne Johnson, 19, was charged with the cold-blooded murder of his landlord, Alan Bono, in 1981, while the couple fought over his girlfriend, Debbie Glatzel, 26. But it wasn’t Johnson who killed his 40-year-old friend. years, said an unprecedented lawyer: Johnson was manipulated by a demon into stabbing Bono with a 5-inch pocket knife.
The gruesome story is part of the “Conjuring” cinematic universe because controversial real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It full movie played respectively by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, were heavily involved in the 1980s case.
It started in Brookfield, Connecticut, when 12-year-old Debbie’s little brother David Glatzel began experiencing terrifying hallucinations.
David regularly saw “a man with big black eyes, a thin face with animal features and ragged teeth, pointed ears, horns and hooves,” his mother Judy told People magazine in the run-up to the trial. The creature, she added, told him to “be careful.”
As his condition worsened, the boy grunted, hissed, and, unlikely for a 12-year-old boy, he would quote passages from “Paradise Lost.” He often spoke of death and stabbing.
Scared, the Glatzels enlisted the help of the Warrens, popular television ghost hunters, who brought in three priests for a series of exorcisms. Among those rituals they were also witnessed by Arne Johnson.
Lorraine Warren, who was also a psychic, told the Hartford Courant that during one of the rituals, Johnson appeared to sacrifice himself to help save the boy. “Johnson jumped up and yelled at the demon, ‘Come into me, I’ll fight you, come into me,’” she recalled. His request worked, they claimed. Johnson was possessed.
To this day, Debbie and David’s brother Carl Glatzel maintains that the Warrens’ claim was a hoax to earn quick money and that David suffered from mental illness as a child. He sued Lorraine Warren and author Gerald Brittle in 2007 when a reprint of Brittle’s book “The Devil in Connecticut” exposed the traumatic experience. The case was dismissed.
According to Debbie, Johnson also began to see the demon and began to act strangely.
“[He] was going into a trance,” he told People. “He would growl and say that he saw the beast. Later he would not remember. He was like David. ”
On February 16, 1981, Johnson’s deranged behavior reached its sad climax. Johnson, his 15-year-old sister Wanda, Debbie, his 9-year-old cousin Mary, and Bono were hanging out when Bono, drunk, got aggressive. Wanda told the Washington Post that she later grabbed the wrist of Debbie’s 9-year-old cousin and refused to let go. That’s when Johnson fatally stabbed Bono, saying the devil forced his hand.
It was reportedly the first murder in Brookfield in 193 years. He was arrested a day later.