A man described as a ghost hunter was taken to the hospital after reportedly stabbing himself in the chest while staying at an infamous Iowa home where six children and two adults were killed by an ax murderer in 1912.
Robert Laursen of Rhinelander, Wisconsin, was staying overnight in the Villisca Ax Murder House when the terrifying incident unfolded.
The 37-year-old man was said to be part of a group of paranormal investigators who were exploring the home for supernatural phenomena when he stabbed himself with an unknown object, the Daily Mail reported.
The details of what unfolded are unclear, though reports claim that Laursen was alone inside one of the rooms inside the home — which has no working plumbing or electricity — when the stabbing unfolded just before 1 a.m. Friday morning.
"It’s kind of shocking to wake up and hear that someone has nearly died at your tourist attraction," Villisca Ax Murder House owner Martha Linn told the Omaha World-Herald, adding that she's "sick" over the incident. "I can’t imagine why somebody would do something like this to himself."
According to the Villisca Ax Murder House's official website, the tourist hub is the site of a grisly crime that unfolded on June 10, 1912, in which an individual who was never caught "bludgeoned to death the entire family of Josiah Moore and two overnight guests."
If Laursen truly was exploring the house for paranormal phenomena, he wouldn't be the first, as the Villisca Ax Murder House has apparently been the subject of tourist interest and ghost hunters, alike for quite some time.
"Visits by paranormal investigators have provided audio, video and photographic proof of paranormal activity," reads the home's official website. "Tours have been cut short by children's voices, falling lamps, moving ladders and flying objects. Psychics have confirmed the presence of spirits dwelling in the home and many have actually communicated with them, and skeptics have left believers."
Take a tour of the home below:
Hospital officials have not released Laursen's condition, though it is unclear if the refusal has come at his or his family's request. Police also have no plans to file charges, as there appears to be no foul play.
"He was basically inside the room, as far as we've been able to piece together and he yelled out for help," Montgomery County Sheriff Joe Sampson told KMA radio. "That's when a couple of other people doing their paranormal research came into the room and found him. They called 911, and that's pretty much where it is now."
He added, "I don't believe it's an accident. Why he did it, we have no idea."
Both Linn and authorities said that this is the first time there has been an incident like this since the home opened to the public two decades ago.
(H/T: Daily Mail)