Tuesday, April 11, 2006

4/11/06 (PMP) Making up the Ending

Doug and Mary Lyall didn’t allow time to stand still when their daughter, Suzy, disappeared in 1998. They took action, not only for their own daughter, but for the countless thousands upon thousands of other missing persons across the country. They founded the nonprofit organization, Center for Hope, ( http://www.hope4themissing.org/ ) and are responsible for the following:

Federal Legislation – Suzanne’s Law

The New York State Campus Safety Act

The Assault and Abduction Free School Zone Bill

A computerized system to report information about missing persons to all toll booths and rest stops on the NYS Thruway

Missing person profiles are displayed in the New York State Income Tax forms

April 6th is proclaimed Missing Person's Day by Governor Pataki

Suzanne's Law passed and signed by President Bush on April 30, 2003, raising the age from 18 to 21 on investigations for missing persons to begin immediately after the report has been filed.

Established a partnership with The Nation's Missing Children Organization and Center for Missing Adults

Collaborated with DCJS to develop the "Investigative Guide for Missing College Students"

Being active in the “cause” doesn’t guarantee immunity from psychics’ offerings. In fact, since we are easier to find than the typical family, we probably hear from them more often. This story, written by Doug Lyall, is just one of several times they were approached by psychics. This one apparently couldn’t get a good ending for her reading, so she decided to make one up and then asked for something outrageous.

“Not long after our daughter Suzanne went missing, we received a call from a woman who identified herself as a psychic. While many people were assuming that Suzanne was a homicide victim, the psychic told us that she was safe and could be found within a short drive from our home. Although we had mixed feelings about psychics, we were not getting results from the police, and decided to meet with her and her mother at their home.

In order to demonstrate her ability she offered to do a reading for us. Most of the information from the reading made little sense, but she did seem to have a direct hit with information about Mary’s brother. Her demonstration was enough to convince us that she might be able to help us find our daughter.

She told us that Suzy had gone willingly with a computer group described as a cult. Suzy went with to group to several locations in the area and eventually ended up in a small town 45 minutes from her campus. She was supposedly brainwashed and not capable of making independent decisions. She was also thought to be pregnant.

On one Sunday, Mary and I followed her to town and after some driving around; the psychic located the house where Suzy was thought to be kept. Not being able to enter the house, the psychic decided to call the state police and have them intervene. The two officers consented to go the house and ask some standard questions. Their report to us indicated that there was nothing suspicious evident. That day was a roller coaster ride, going from believing that we would be taking Suzy home, to the depths of disappointment. We gave our blessing for her to continue looking on her own, but we could no longer be active participants.

As time went on, we heard from her on occasion and a year later she informed us that she was writing a book about Suzy and the psychic investigation that accompanied her disappearance. Her desire was to use real names and events, but to add a fictitious ending.

To her surprise, we did not consent. From that point her attitude and behavior changed dramatically. While she was initially wanting to help out of the goodness of her heart, there was now a demand for money and we received a bill for several thousand dollars. Needless to stay, we did not comply and we haven’t heard from her in over two years.”

To read more about Suzy and the Lyall’s work for the missing, please see:

We understand that many people believe that psychics are effective in solving crimes and finding missing people. Please keep in mind that the goal of this series is to help families understand techniques used by persons making these claims and make better decisions about the use of psychics.

Project Jason and its volunteers cannot act as a clearinghouse for persons claiming success in using paranormal means to locate missing persons. We will be unable to respond to emails or other correspondence sent to us from persons making these claims or persons offering information about or referrals to psychics.

We instead invite those persons to present their evidence to the members of the James Randi Education Foundation. They have a forum available for you to discuss your claims. http://forums.randi.org/forumdisplay.php?f=7

Jump to the next story in the series:


Anonymous RSLancastr said...

Good grief... I imagine the "fictitious ending" was one in which the psychic actually accomplished something other than causing further grief to your family.

Thanks for sharing your experience about this charlatan.

1:35 PM  

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