“Unknown Encounters” in Westlake, Ohio


Thomas Wertman

Co-Director Cleveland Ufology Project

Chief Field Investigator – Mufon of Ohio

Recently I conducted a program titled “Unknown Encounters” at the Porter Public Library in Westlake, Ohio. The multimedia laced presentation to the 120 in attendance featured the 1994 Trumbull County UFO sightings, the 2012 Hopewell Mounds crop circle formation, and a story about a potential abductee.

The program started off with a video entitled “Unknown Encounters” which featured pictures and videos of unexplained events. Supporting the video was a narrative from MUFON of Ohio Chief Field Investigator Thomas Wertman. The video set the tone for the program featuring only unexplainable events and never knowing when or where these events will occur.

The audience learned how Kenny Young discovered the Trumbull County case of 1994 totally by accident. Details of his discovery were supported by a recording made of Young’s appearance on the Art Bell’s Coast-to-Coast AM Show. Following the recording were a number of slides featuring the participants involved and portions of the approximately 48 minutes of 911 calls. The recording contained both the humor and seriousness of the event. Jokingly references were made to why aliens would come to Liberty, “After all there is no intelligent life here”. Other conversations included Youngstown air traffic control informing Liberty Township dispatch there is nothing in a 60 mile region. Dispatch then had to then come up with something to tell their officers.

While the Trumbull County case was of local interest, the crop circle investigation drew the most attention. The Hopewell Mounds crop circle formation investigation was headed by Jeff Wilson of the Independent Crop Circle Researchers Association (ICCRA) and included myself and my Co-Director of the Cleveland Ufology Project (CUP) Aaron Clark, and CUP David Tribby. First-hand information of the investigation was provided through pictures detailing the investigative procedures and onsite findings.  These findings included normal background radiation detected with Geiger counters, but unusual compass anomalies detected in only one of the circles with both magnetic and cell phone compasses. The audience also learned of how prior to the event Jeff Wilson predicted this region was a prime candidate for a crop circle formation. This segment of the program was concluded by ICCRA findings using the Levengood Test and how in Jeff Wilson’s opinion this formation could not have been man-made.

The reported abduction case was the third segment and drew a lot of silence during the program, but private questions after. The case chronicled a series of events which occurred over a number of years. These events included initial contact, examinations multiple times, and meeting possible hybrids. During this portion of the program the audience was reminded of the complexity of the human mind and how dreams can seem like reality. Interestingly after the program someone else identified with one of the most unusual aspects of the potential abductees claims.

Concluding the program was a 30 minute question and answer session that stretched out the last 45 minutes until closing. There were a number of excellent questions that prompted a second article which will follow. Last year I presented a similar program at Porter Public Library that drew 127. While the interest in the “Unknown” is growing, the library staff in Westlake deserves a tremendous amount of credit. They provided excellent promotion and an eight page handout for the event that included UFO related books, websites, and other UFO resources.