Today in October 1975, hearing of Ronald Defeo Jr. case begins. Defeo Jr. was accused for the killing of his parent and four siblings in their home in Amityville, New York. It was reported that the ghost of the dead family members haunted the new owners of the house, which later served as inspiration for the Amityville Horror book and movies.
In November 13, 1974, Ronald Defeo Jr. ran into a nearby Amityville bar and told the people that his parents had been shot dead in their home. Sympathizers gathered and immediately followed Defeo back to the family's residence, which was located at 112 Ocean Avenue. A man at the scene named Joe Yeswit was the one who called the Suffolk County police to report the incident. Afterwards, the police arrived, and found the bodies of the victims Ronald Defeo Sr. age 43, his wife Louise, 42, and their children Dawn 18, Allison 13, Marc 11 and John 9 who were shot in their sleep. At first, Ronald Defeo Jr, said that the murders were a mob hit, but later confessed of committing the crime himself the following day.
Investigators were baffled with one aspect of the case, which is all the six dead victims were shot dead in their sleep, without struggle, no sound of gunshots were heard even though the gun Defeo used did not have any silencer. At the beginning of Defeo's trail in 1975, the defense attorney argued for an insanity defense. Nonetheless, by November of 1975, he was found guilty and charge with six counts of second-degree murder and later sentenced to six consecutive sentences of 25 years to life imprisonment. Over the years, Defeo gave contradictory accounts of the story; he even claimed that his sister Dawn and two other accomplices were involved in the murder.
In December 1975, the house was sold to the family of George Lutz who moved in with his wife and three children. However, the family could not live for more than 28 days in the house before fleeing on the account that they saw ghost of the dead family. However, George Lutz was accused for fabricating the whole story just to make money by critics, which he denied but maintained his stance that he was telling the truth. Two years later, a writer called Jay Anson publish a novel titled The Amityville Horror, which became a best-seller and later inspired the story of the same name in 1979, and a remake in 2005.