William (Bill) Ramsey, from a young age, had been suffering from brief periods of behaviour that many described as ‘animal like’ normally these bouts would also be accompanied by an unusual smell. On one occasion, Bill’s parents witnessed him rip a concrete post out of the ground and smash it directly in-front of them – this was the most severe incident during childhood, other bouts being milder in comparison.
Bill’s behaviour gradually worsened into adulthood, and at breaking-point he admitted himself into Southend Hospital. Unfortunately, this visit to the hospital didn’t end well – with Bill attacking and biting a nurse, then ransacking the hospital before staff could fully sedate him. However, this incident was by no means the most shocking of Bill’s bouts…
On 22nd July 1987 – Bill picked up a local prostitute and drove her to Southend Police Station, where he demanded to officers that he be locked up for the safety of the public. The Police officers, looking further into Bill could find no criminal history, so were reluctant to arrest him for no real reason. Suddenly, Bill began to growl and snarl like a rabid animal at Duty Sergeant Terry Fisher, Bill then grabbed Fisher by the throat hoisting the 6ft tall, 14 stone policemen into the air and then launching him across the car park. Another police officer was scratched in the altercation, it ultimately took six men to finally restrain Bill who had not gone down without a struggle reportedly throwing officers ‘like matchsticks’ across the station car park.
Safely locked up into a cell, officers began to recover from the struggle only to hear a loud bang coming from within the cell block. Bill, incredibly, had smashed through the re-enforced hatch in his cell door with his head and arm stuck through, PC Tony Belford stated, ‘I’ve never seen anything like it before or since, to see a human being doing things like that’. Police had to sedate Bill, he required a dose nearly three times the amount of an average person to calm him. The Fire Brigade then had to be called to cut Bill out of the cell door.
Southend Magistrates ordered Bill to be sent to Runwell Hospital for psychiatric examination, to try and identify the cause for such terrifying behaviour. Once in the hospital under evaluation, Bill was unable to recollect any of the nights events. Psychiatrists were unable to detect anything to explain Bill’s behaviour, they could only assume he may suffer from a mental illness known as clinical lycanthropy, in which people believe they are an animal. However, after much media coverage of the incident dubbing Bill as the ‘Werewolf of Southend’, a famous duo of paranormal investigators had another explanation…
Ed and Lorraine Warren are highly regarded as the most prolific paranormal investigators in the world, handling several high-profile paranormal cases that have inspired countless movies, books and documentaries.
Lorraine Warren discovered the story of Bill Ramsay from an American documentary covering the case, she concluded that Bill Ramsey was suffering because of a demonic possession. Lorraine convinced Ed, who at first was sceptical (he later wrote an entire book on the case), to contact Bill to provide assistance.
28th July 1989 – Bill had travelled to Connecticut USA, to meet with the Warrens. He was eventually taken to Our Lady of the Rosary Chapel, in which a bishop (accompanied by the Warrens and two armed guards) conducted an exorcism on Bill Ramsey. As the exorcism commenced, Bill began to ‘turn’ with witnesses and photographs clearly detailing Bill having to be physically restrained whilst his hands and body contorted as he growled at the bishop. When Bill eventually came around, he was exhausted and covered in sweat – however, since that day he has never experienced any such behaviour again.
Whether this is a case of lycanthropy, or genuine demonic possession, these events have left many individuals perplexed and disturbed. Its association with the Warrens certainly gives the case a lot more credibility, and it is regarded by many as the only true modern-day case of a ‘werewolf’.
What are you thoughts on the Southend Werewolf?