Amityville Horror: A True Story, unveiled in 1977, sold over six million copies. The intriguing film starring James Brolin premiered around two years later, and it was a tremendous success. The best-seller also resulted in several other books, documentaries, online discussions, and several sequels, remakes, and prequels.
Most people don’t know that George and Kathy Lutz, who lived in the same house that the murders occurred, benefited very little from both the book and movie’s fame, money, and success. Apparently, they only got around $300,000 from the whole commercial venture.
You may wonder why the Lutz family should benefit from the murder case, yet it was not directly linked to them. That’s because the family lived in the home where the DeFeo killings happened for 28 days. The Lutz’s also met with William Weber, Ronald’s lawyer, to discuss turning their experience into a frightening novel.
The project did not materialize because the Lutz’s pulled out when Weber demanded part of the profits goes to his client Ronald DeFeo Jr. The money aside, the documentaries, films, and written works never did tell the whole dreadful story, and over the years, some weird facts have emerged. Besides, real-life incidents that inspired the production of a horror film are much more frightening. Let’s uncover them.
Amityville Books and Movies Are Based on a True Story
All good terrifying legends are spooky, involve a haunted place, ghosts, spirits, and the protagonist rarely gets a happy ending. There is always a monster who gives the reader or audience chills. The Amityville Horror captures all these elements because it’s from real-life events. The George Lutz family experiences add to the thrill. Still, the actual chilly incident started when Ronald DeFeo Jr, whose nickname was Butch, slew his whole family in minutes. All the individuals were executed face down on their beds, and evidence unveiled that the parents and a girl aged 13 years were awake during the entire ordeal.
Ronald’s Sister Might Be the Masterminds
If you are a student striving to write scary fiction and can’t seem to progress past the title, you can reach out to an essay writing service to get tips on how to produce quality content. In case the Amityville Horror inspires you, you can get twists and turns or writing ideas by knowing more details about the incident.
According to Ronald, his 18-year-old sister Dawn DeFeo together with two friends, are the ones who planned the chilly shootings. The execution was because their strict dad, Ronald DeFeo Senior, was abusive towards his children. Ronald further confessed that Dawn ended the siblings’ life first, but a fight later ensued that caused Ronald to shoot Dawn accidentally.
There’s a Chance a Second Shooter Was Never Caught
Throughout his trial, DeFeo altered his narrative on multiple occasions, and in one case, he accused the Mafia of the crimes. Another time he directed the blame to strange voices coming from inside the home.
There is also the part where he admitted to planning the shooting with his close associates and sister. So even though Ronald DeFeo Jr was found guilty of the mass killing and died in March 2021 while still serving his sentence, there might be a second person involved in the killings that was never caught. According to documentarian Ryan Katzenbach, the crime did not occur as it was explained, and that new evidence shows that more people were involved in the shocking crime. So there is a chance that DeFeo Jr never acted alone and that he had help in murdering the six people.
The DeFeo’s Were Put to Death in a Gruesome Way
Horrific details about DeFeo’s family cause of death were released after a thorough investigation was done. The case became one of the most terrifying how the gruesome crime was done sent shocks throughout the world. Ronald used a high-powered rifle to kill all six family members mercilessly. The husband and wife each received two shots, and the kids were each killed with one bullet.
The creepy part is that the dead bodies were arranged similarly: face down. Furthermore, the young children, a 12-year-old brother, 13-year-old sister, and the youngest son, who was nine years were executed in close range. The kids were also awake, yet those who live nearby failed to hear screams or gun shorts.
What makes The Amityville story even scarier and spooky is that according to Jason Anson’s novel, home items remained even after DeFeo junior committed the gruesome crime. The things came with the home when the Lutz family purchased it.