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The North Newark UFO Case:
Anatomy of a Journalistic Investigation

Statement by Primary Witness

"I've been a ham operator since 1987. On Friday and Saturday nights a bunch of us guys get together and talk on 28.376 MHz. And on Saturday night there is a UFO net on 39.77 MHz. Anyway, between 10:00 and 10:30 P.M. I heard some squealing on 39.77. Then I went down to 10 meters and it was still there--same squeal all over. I heard it on the ham set, on my computer, and on a speaker that was not attached to anything.

"Then something struck my antenna. It sounded like something scraping metal to metal. The clock said exactly 10:30 when it struck and the house started shaking. As I turned around, I saw the compass on my shelf spinning like a top. Then I yelled out to my mother, 'Are you all right?' She said: 'What's going on?' She thought, we we're in an earthquake. But nothing was falling off the shelves. The house shook for about 6 minutes.

"Also at 10:30 the lights started blinking on and off, constantly. Now my radio clock--if you pull the plug for a second it will go to 12 o'clock--never changed. The computer was on and I shut it off right away because I was afraid it was going to crash. Then I shut the radio off, because it was squealing. But even when I shut it off it kept squealing. A high pitch squeal was coming through all the speakers. So I turned, looked outside, and said, 'Oh, my outside light are on,' but they weren't my lights. And it was too bright. The yard looked like daytime; I said, 'What the hell is going on?' So I opened the [dirty] window and saw my outside lights weren't on. Then I looked up and there it was.

"There was a big bright light above the tree in my neighbor's yard. I watched it a couple of seconds and then went to the bathroom window to get a better look. The light was gone. Now I saw a black object moving south, southwest. All I saw was the tail edge of it, which was rounded in the back. Moving very slowly. No noise. No sound. I went outside right away to see if any of the neighbors saw it and that's when I saw the light come on a second time. The object was about four houses down when it came on. You couldn't see the craft really but you could see the glow of that light from it.

"So I ran in the house right away and called 911. 'We think we had an earthquake here,' I said. I didn't want to look like an idiot with the police telling them it was a UFO. By the time I hung up the phone, the fire department was already corning down the street and the neighbors all started coming out of the woodwork. All together there were two police squad cars, a fire truck, a fire rescue truck, and three or four neighbors out there.

"So I asked them how did you get here so fast, and one cop said we've been having phone calls of UFO sightings all night, since about 9 o'clock. I said, I didn't call for that, I called because of an earthquake. He said there was no earthquake. I said something hit my antenna, something hit my tree. A lot of broken branches were scattered all over the yard, more than a dozen. They were on the roof, too. There was clean, brand-new snow everywhere; it had snowed the night before. The antenna was bent toward the west 2 or 3 degrees off center.

"So they followed me through the alleyway into the back yard, walking around. One cop came into the yard and two firemen, and another guy, I don't know who he was, he had Civil Defense on his jacket--a big CD on the back. This guy put one of his gray bags on the ground and started picking up branches. I said what the heck are you doing. He said 'We take samples.' I know what the radiation insignia looks like, and I saw the yellow insignia on the bags with the red thing on it.

"He was picking up branches, cutting pieces off, putting it in his bags. So I picked up one of those gray bags and it was heavy. I said, 'What the hell is this, lead?' He said, 'Yeah, they're leaded bags in case there's radiation.' I said jokingly maybe that was a UFO. He said we were sighting UFOs all night. At 9 o'clock over Long Island, Pomona, we were tracking three UFOs, three were going to the south and one was to the west. Then I said, 'Oh, that's interesting, I'm a member of MUFON." I got nothing more out of his mouth.

"The Civil Defense guy left in his own car. The firemen and police said there's nothing to report. Then the guy across the street, a Portuguese man, runs out to the cop and says: 'Hey look UFOs are coming here, how do you protect us, my wife and my child?' The cops said: 'What can we do? Were cops? We can't do anything.' So I asked him, 'Did you see anything?' He said: 'No, no, no.'

"Afterwards I got back on the radio and said, 'Hey, you guys see anything over this way? Take a look.' Alex Cavalleri in Brooklyn said there are strange lights over here. He said it's got to be south of you. That's when it hit a telephone pole a few streets away. It cut the top of it in half.

"I also called [the ultility company] PSE&G, because our lights were flashing on and off. They said we haven't had any problem. Around 11 o'clock Ruben Echevarria said, 'Hey, John, you hear the squealing?' I says, 'Yeah, it started up again.' I looked out the window, but there was nothing there.

"That night we also saw black helicopters. Everybody saw them. One was right over the tree. Alex tells me: 'Go outside and see if they are taking photos, I see flashes.' The helicopters had no insignia on them. They were all black. We also had the Feds in white vans driving up and down the street all night long. The vans had government plates on them."

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