Bryan & Baxter
Bryan & Baxter is a paranormal claims investigation team composed of Bryan Bonner and Matthew M. Baxter. Their investigations have included claims of ghosts, poltergeists, psychics, UFOs, conspiracy theories, and urban legends. They specialize in exposing frauds, and have become associated with scientific skepticism. They are based in Denver, Colorado.
Bryan Bonner and Matthew M. Baxter are the founders of the Rocky Mountain Paranormal Research Society, and are also the hosts of the weekly podcast WARNING: Radio.
- 1 Background
- 2 Public outreach
- 3 Controversies
- 4 References
- 5 External links
Bonner founded the Rocky Mountain Paranormal Society in 1999, influenced not by personal experiences of the paranormal, but by an interest in the paranormal developed by horror movies (such as The Exorcist), and the paranormal claims made in ghost hunting reality television shows.
Bryan & Baxter make the distinction that they do not investigate the paranormal, but rather the legitimacy of the paranormal claims made by others. Their credentials include certifications from the manufacturers of the equipment they use and certification in electromagnetic field studies for broadcast equipment.
They have a background in video and photography. They also work with a network of people in other specialties, including geologists, medical doctors, video and audio production people, linguists, and magicians, the latter of special value due to their expertise in misdirection and perception.
Bryan & Baxter give presentations and classes to the public dealing with pseudoscience and the paranormal. These events have included presentations at the University of Colorado, Metropolitan State University, Ohlone College, The Denver Art Museum, SkeptiCamp, The Amazing Meeting, and StarFest/HorrorFest.
At The Amazing Meeting in 2012, they assisted the James Randi Educational Foundation with its One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge, a test that offers a one million dollar prize to anyone who can demonstrate a paranormal ability under controlled conditions.
Denver Extraterrestrial Affair Commission
In 2010, Denver, Colorado resident Jeff Peckman initiated a citizen ballot proposal to create an Extraterrestrials Affairs Commission, to prepare for visits from extraterrestrials, and which garnered international interest. Bryan & Baxter headed the opposition group The Mission for Inhibiting Bureaucracy (The M.I.B.). After the proposal was defeated, Peckman filed a complaint with the Denver Board of Ethics, where he says of Bryan & Baxter: "They are known as very disreputable, incompetent, unethical, and hostile persons within the field of paranormal research". The complaint goes on to suggest Bryan & Baxter's opposition to the ballot initiative was due to their involvement with the CIA, NSA, or other covert agencies.
In 2011, the Denver Board of Ethics dismissed this complaint for lack of jurisdiction, and because the complaint did not deal with any issues that are covered by the Denver Code of Ethics.
The television show Ghost Hunters had investigated the Stanley Hotel (the setting that inspired Stephen King's book The Shining), and claimed it had paranormal activity because of certain minerals present on the property. The hotel sells tickets to tour its paranormal activity and haunted areas. In 2008, Bryan & Baxter worked with the USDA to perform a soil survey of the premises, with the result showing that the claimed minerals were not in fact present. Bonner states that the Stanley Owners then asked they not spread the results of this report.
Colorado Springs Evergreen Cemetery
In June 2011, Bryan & Baxter, along with others, paid for a late night "Haunted Tour" in Colorado Springs, Colorado offered by the ghost hunting group Pure Paranormal. After the tour, Bryan & Baxter contacted the cemetery manager to complain of what they felt was unethical and disrespectful behavior during the tour on the part of Pure Paranormal. The city subsequently ended the Pure Paranormal tours, and instituted new policies to restrict such cemetery activity.
Bryan & Baxter presented this at the 2011 Colorado SkeptiCamp conference, and this presentation was recorded and posted on the web. Pure Paranormal filed a copyright complaint about the video, and the video hosting service withdrew the video. This action was disputed and the video was later restored.
KDVR UFOs over Denver
In November 2012, Investigative Reporter Heidi Hemmat of Fox News affiliate KDVR News did a story about a video sent in by a source wishing to remain anonymous, of several blurry unidentified flying objects filmed near Denver, Colorado. The story received world-wide attention. Hemmat insisted the objects were not birds, bugs, or planes, and that no one was able to determine what they were. Bryan and Baxter contacted Hemmat, questioning that conclusion, and offering their own video and analysis demonstrating the objects could in fact be birds or bugs. On a follow-up segment aired Nov 20, Hemmat continued to claim the objects remained unexplained.
Selected media coverage
|2008||Ghosts of the Elitch Theatre||Themselves||by Little Fist Productions|
|2008||The Stanley Effect||Themselves||by 13 Pictures|
|2009||Ghosts of Capitol Hill||Themselves||by Michael Gross Productions|
|2012||Atom the Amazing Zombie Killer||Used car salesmen||by Bizjack Flemco|
|2012||P.M.||Themselves||by Dave Franco|
|2013||The Castle Project||Themselves||by Brian Higgins|
|2000||Scariest Places On Earth||Episode 1.1|
|2005||Is It Real?||Episode 1.3 Ghosts|
|2006||Ghost Hunters||Season 2, Bonus Investigation: Elkhorn Lodge|
|2008||Larry King Live||Space Alien Caught On Tape?|
|2010||Most Terrifying Places in America||Part 6|
|2012||National Geographic Channel||The Secret History of UFOs|
|2002||Ghosts, Critters, and Sacred Places of Washington and Oregon III||Jefferson Davis||Norseman Ventures|
|2006||A Case For Ghosts||J.A. Danalek||Llewellyn Publications|
|2008||Ghost in the Mirror||Leslie Rule||Andrews McMeel Publishing|
|2008||Ghosts of Colorado||Dennis Baker||Schiffer Publishing|
|2010||Weird Colorado||Charmaine Ortega Getz||Sterling Publishing|
|2011||The Haunted History of the Croke Patterson Mansion||Ann Leggett||The History Press|
Newspapers and magazines
- "Bryan & Baxter, Paranormal Claims Investigators". Radio Amerika Now. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- "A Real Ghost Story". Westword. 26 Oct 2006. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "Unexplained Confidential: Rocky Mountain Paranormal". HorrorNews. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "SV Podcast 029: Rocky Mountain Paranormal Episode | Skeptical Viewer Podcast". Skeptical Viewer. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "Bloody Celluloid Film Series". Zvents. 5 Oct 2009. Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "Haunted Halls of CU Walking Tour". Haunted Colorado. 16 Oct 2009. Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "Is CU Haunted?". October 19, 2011. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
- "Bryan & Baxter Paranormal Claims Investigators". Psychology Club Speaker Series. Ohlone College. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
- "The King Tut Curse". 27 August 2010.
- "CrossBones". The Denver Art Museum. 28 August 2009.
- "Colorado Springs SkeptiCamp". Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "The Amazing Meeting (TAM) 2011". 14 July 2011. Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "The Amazing Meeting (TAM) 2012". 11 July 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012.
- "The Amazing Meeting (TAM) 2013". 20 July 2013. Retrieved 20 July 2013.
- "StarFest/HorrorFest 2009". Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "StarFest/HorrorFest 2011". Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "StarFest/HorrorFest 2011". Salon. Retrieved 14 April 2012.
- "The Amazing Meeting (TAM) 2012". 12 July 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012.
- "Denver residents proposes commission for UFOs". Le Canadian. 11 Dec 2009. Retrieved 20 May 2012.
- Weaver, Matthew (3 Nov 2010). "Aliens from outer space are safe to fly over Denver". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 May 2012.
- Moye, David (Oct 14, 2010). "Denver Voters Will Decide on Proposed E.T. Affairs Office". AOL News. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- Peckman, Jeff. "INQUIRY/ COMPLAINT FORM" (PDF). CITY AND COUNTY OF DENVER. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- "Denver Board of Ethics Digest of Selected Opinions" (PDF). City and County of Denver. January 1 – June 30, 2011. p. Page 15 Case 11–16. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- "Ghost tours". Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- Stollznow, Karen (21 Dec 2009). "The Stanley Hotel: An Investigation". Skeptical Inquirer. Retrieved 17 July 2012.
- Moye, David (21 Aug 2011). "Ghost Adventures Clashes With Paranormal Researchers Over Unexplained Phenomena". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- "011212 Minutes" (PDF). Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation Advisory Board. 12 Jan 2012. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- "Bryan & Baxter debunk P.U.R.E. Paranormal". Agent of Doubt. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- "Another update on PURE Paranormal". Agent of Doubt. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- Speigel, Lee (2 Dec 2012). "Denver UFOs (Or Flying Insects) Still have The Mile-High City Abuzz". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 10 Dec 2012.
- Plait, Phil (28 Nov 2012). "UFOs Over Denver Bug Me". Slate. Retrieved 10 Dec 2012.