Good morning. My guest today is Rick Hart from RCPSKC. I had the pleasure of meeting Rick, his lovely wife, Melissa, and several members of his team at a breast cancer fund raiser in Kentucky earlier this year. I then had the opportunity and honor of participating in a joint investigation with both RCPSKC and RCPSKY at the historic Lemp Mansion in St. Louis. A truly fascinating and educational experience.
LP: Good morning, Rick.
RH: Good morning, Linda.
LP: Tell us a little bit about your group, and your team members.
RH: RCPSKC is an RCPS Family member. Now, all that means is we collaborate with other RCPS Teams throughout the country on ideas, techniques, theories and we even do some evidence review for each other. We have skype meetings and talk about training, etcetera.
My own team is made up of a group of four core members. These are the members who go on every investigation, and they are the backbone of the RCPSKC organization.
Brian, my Co-Founder is IT educated and currently is employed in that field. He handles all important communications within the group. He is the go to person for our monthly radio show on a local FM station and he takes care of all aspects of that relationship. He handles any complaints from clients and has even handled a few internal problems between members. We spend a great deal of time together and personalities do clash from time to time. Brian is the mediator.
I am the other Co-Founder and I am educated in Computers, Sociology and have 17 years experience in the construction field. I work on the team as the tech manager, which basically means I’m responsible in making sure everything works, everything is charged and everything is packed up after an investigation. I also look at new technology and decide if it is something we can use. My knowledge of home construction lends some help in debunking activity as normal house sounds from mechanical sources.
Michelle is our Lead Investigator and works for a lab. She is our resident skeptic. She is scientifically minded and is well versed in the procedures for experiments and keeping tight control on our investigations and our environment. She also takes the reins in the absence of Brian or myself if we cannot attend an investigation.
Stacey is our case manager at present. She is a loan officer and is college educated in business. Stacey keeps us organized and running like a well oiled machine. Stacey’s husband is also a commercial licensed electrician and answers any questions we might have regarding EMF and electricity.
Melissa is our team treasurer and also my wife. She is very grounded in reality and helps everyone on the team keep our experiments and our evidence real. Melissa has a background in retail management and has an uncanny ability to read people. She can spot BS from a mile away.
The newest member of our team is actually an old member. Christina left due to a pregnancy and has now returned. Christina is the youngest member of our team at 21 and offers up new and young ideas on how to approach this field. Christina’s fearless nature, having grown up in a very active home allows her to immediately track down activity and determine its source. Christina is also very knowledgeable in computers and is my assistant in the tech department if I am not able to attend an investigation.
LP: Having participated in an investigation I’ve seen the benefits of these varied backgrounds, and how they work together to form a group dedicated to the field of paranormal research. For those of you who haven’t participated in an investigation, or even if you have, you might want to jump on over to MyPara - register and wait for the next streaming of a live investigation. It’s a lot more fun than watching TV as you can actually participate through the chat box allowing you to talk to the investigators as well as other members of the paranormal research community.
So, Rick, what was the motivation for you in forming a paranormal research team?
RH: Brian and I were on another team together and that team basically faded away. It was then that I had a talk with Brian and along with Jon’s invite to join the RCPS Family, it was decided to start a new team with Brian and I as the Co-Founders. We based the team on the scientific side, in as much as we will not introduce the metaphysical into our investigations, except, on an experimentation basis. I.e. recently we involved the use of a psychic in an investigation where we knew the complete history of the home. We plan to experiment with this psychic in an ongoing basis to gather evidence that there is something to the claim of psychic abilities. We only use her as we feel the situation is warranted and she is not privy to the location of the investigation prior to her arrival to the home. She is only told the date and time the investigation will take place. Once the day of the investigation arrives, she is either driven to the home, or she is met and led to the home by Brian or myself. Once inside the home, all members of the team are removed and either Brian or I give her a tour of the home and record any impressions she may have. We then match up her impressions with what we already know of the history, or research what she has told us afterward.
LP: Cool! I really look forward to your research in this area. You, of course, know that I have participated in some psychic experiments, and although my belief in that area is much different than your own, I do believe psychics can be beneficial on investigations under the circumstances you’ve set out above.
I spoke earlier a little about MyPara. Tell us your motivation in starting the MyPara community network.
RH: MyPara was created out of Jon’s banning from another paranormal social network for the simple act of expression another opinion, based on logic and science. In the early years of this recent paranormal fad, much of what was presented was of a metaphysical nature. Jon decided to open his own social network and go against the norm and make it as scientifically based as humanly possible in a metaphysical world. We restrict MyPara to the scientific endeavor, but we will not ban you for mentioning or debating the metaphysical. IF you debate it with evidence and not just feelings, assumptions and speculations. These are also the same criteria we require for any scientific debates, so it’s not one-sided. In our social network we require strict protocols for the presentation of evidence, whether it be photography, video or audio. I.e. you can’t just throw up one blurry photo of a mist and expect that we will validate it as paranormal. You would be required to also submit control shots and photos before and after the anomaly as well as a statement of weather conditions inside and outside of the location. Putting up a single pic and asking for a conclusion is the same as giving someone one sentence of a book and asking what the story is about. It can’t be done.
LP: (Laughing). Yeah, I’ve seen some of those blurry pictures with the little circles and arrows telling me exactly what I’m supposed to see and where, as well as the EVP’s which tell me exactly what the voice is allegedly saying. I hate that.
What’s your most “haunting experience”?
RH: I’ve experienced many things in the time before and since I started investigating. My own home is full of unexplainable activity and the reason why I entered the field, but the one experience that sticks out for me is the recent disembodied voice that Brian and myself heard and we were fortunate enough to record that voice. We went over the evidence with a fine tooth comb, reviewing video and audio from several sources and we can account for everyone present in the home and what they were doing and saying at that very moment. There is no way it was a member of the team or the homeowners. Outside contamination would be our next concern, but the audio in question was heard and recorded during the very early hours of the morning in a very small town. Also, if outside contamination were present other recorders, both audio and video would have captured a real time normal conversation occurring outside and this was not the case. Only Brian and I heard the voice and only one recorder recorded it.
LP: Wow. I love those moments too. Unfortunately, for me at least, they have been few and far between.
What advice would you give novices wanting to enter the field of paranormal research?
RH: That one is simple. LEARN YOUR EQUIPMENT! Research its limitations, what it was meant to do, and how it can aid in investigations. Knowing your equipment will greatly decrease the false positives presently making the rounds in the field because investigators did not take the time to, for example, learn basic photography. I’m not talking about reading the instructions that came with your camera. I’m talking about teaching yourself photography. Photography is the evidence. The camera is just the tool we use to gather the evidence. We can point and shoot our cameras all night long, but that doesn’t make it good photography or evidence.
Next, research what things are. Example: Ectoplasm has not ever, nor will it ever be, a mist. Ecto was a liquid, semi solid, gauze like substance exuded from the orifices of mediums and oddly enough disappeared when exposed to light. This very fact negates any possibility of capturing it with a flash camera or IR light. Ecto has also been debunked many years ago as nothing more than a parlor trick. You can’t change the definition of something to make it something else.
LP: Thank you, Rick, for being with me today and sharing your knowledge and experience with my readers.
RH: My pleasure.
The field of paranormal research and investigation has become, as Rick said, a fad for many. But for some, like RCPSKC and the RCPS Families it is not just a fad, but a legitimate field of research, and a passion for truth. Want to learn more? Hop on over to http://www.mypara.net and join the conversations, review evidence, and learn from those who believe this is a professional field that should be taken seriously by the investigators presenting evidence to the public.