Unsolved Mysteries of the World

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The Abduction of Herbert Schirmer

Season 6, Ep. 2

Welcome to Unsolved Mysteries of the World Season 6 Episode 2: The Abduction of Herbert Schirmer



It was a cold night on December 3rd, 1967 and it was especially cold at 2:20AM in Ashland Nebraska.

Herbert Schirmer was a young, 22 year-old patrolman making the usual rounds. The streets were pretty much empty, the local businesses were all closed. Everyone was tucked in beds covered in blankets. He passed by the only open business this late at night, a gas station on highway 6. There were, as usual, no customers.


He then noticed something odd in the distance. It looked like red lights flashing upon a large truck. Was it an ambulance? A tow truck? What had happened? He drove down highway 63 until he came upon the scene with his headlights now flicked on to high beam. It was definitely not a truck.


The red lights he had seen flashing were coming from oval-shaped portholes cut into what appeared to be a metallic, oval-shaped object that was hovering about eight feet above the road's surface.


Patrolman Schirmer noted that the object appeared to be made of aluminum, had a small walkway around it, and below, some sort of landing gear. Getting ready to call in the incident, the object rose up with flames shooting out the bottom end and then it suddenly swooshed right over his patrol car.


He looked out his window and in his mirrors but noted that the object was so fast, he did not know where it went. Deciding not to call it in, but because of what he saw, he returned to the police station.


He drove back and within minutes arrived at the station to make his report. He glanced at the station clock to note the time. It was 3AM and he was baffled that it took him, what he believed to be mere minutes to arrive back at the station, yet, all the clocks indicated time had passed.


In his report, he indicated he saw what he believed to be a flying saucer. After his brief report was written up he noted that there was a red welt on his neck, he developed a severe headache and was feeling ill.


He decided that he would not return back to duty until the next day.


Months passed and word got to the US Airforce that a patrolman had seen a flying saucer and that his eye-witness testimony was valid. The Condon Commission at the University of Colorado, who was tasked at the time to investigate and mostly discredit UFO reports asked him to come to Boulder Colorado to retell his UFO encounter.


On February 13, 1968, after being interrogated by several officials, the patrolman was asked to undergo hypnosis under the guidance of Wyoming University psychologist Leo Sprinkle.eo Sprinkle of the University of Wyoming.


Under hypnosis, Schirmer recalled that, after he stopped his car near the object, the engine died and his radio went silent. A white object emerged from the craft and seemed to communicate mentally with him, preventing him from drawing his gun as he attempting to do.


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10/7/2019

The Haunted Old Idaho State Penitentiary Part Three

Season 6, Ep. 15
Welcome to Unsolved Mysteries of the World Season 6 Episode 15, The Old Idaho Penitentiary Part IIIIn the 1940s and 1950s the Idaho Penitentiary again was suffering from overcrowding and a new cell house was constructed. Cell Block #5 held the worst of the worst with maximum security cells, a death row, its very own indoor gallows and drop house.This housing unit is rumoured to be the most haunted of all the buildings on the property, even though, only one official hanging took place within. It was also that last State sanctioned execution in Idaho taking the life of Prisoner # 9509 Raymond Allen Snowden in the most unethical way.On the evening of September 23rd, 1956 Cora Lucille Dean drove to the Hi-Ho Club in Garden City, where she intended to have a few drinks and play the slot machines. Here she met a young man named Raymond Snowden who she found no only attractive, but fun to be around. When the two had a few drinks, Snowden wanted to take things a bit further and pressured Cora. When his advances were denied he threatened Cora in a frightening manner asking her to choose between rape and death. Cora obviously taken aback chose neither and that made Snowden angry who produced a pocket knife and stabbed Cora 29 times.The body, which was found the next morning by a paper boy, was viciously and sadistically cut and mutilated. An autopsy surgeon testified the voice box had been cut, and that this would have prevented the victim from making any intelligible outcry. There were other wounds inflicted while she was still alive — one in her neck, one in her abdomen, two in the face, and two on the back of the neck. The second neck wound severed the spinal cord and caused death. There were other wounds all over her body, and her clothing had been cut away. The nipple of the right breast was missing. There was no evidence of a sexual attack on the victim; however, some of the lacerations were around the breasts and vagina of the deceased.Snowden took the dead woman's wallet hailed a passing motorist and rode back to Boise. There he went to a bowling alley and changed clothes. He dropped his knife into a sewer at a Cigar Shop and threw the wallet away. Then he went to his hotel and cleaned up again. He put the clothes he had worn that evening into a trash barrel outside the hotel.Police narrowed in on Snowden almost immediately as eye-witnesses pointed out that Snowden had left with Cora that evening from the Hi-Ho Club. Police also, remember Snowden from a previous encounter as to which he boasted he was going to sever the spinal cord of his then girlfriend because she was irritating him.They found the weapon, the same one they remember him previously threatening with, still covered in blood in a sewer grate near Hannifin's Cigar Shop. Another eye-witness placed Snowden there and that was enough for an arrest to be made.During the trial it was brought to the attention of the media that Snowden had boasted of two other murders, but they were never confirmed. A detective magazine at the time dubbed Snowden, "Idaho's Jack the Ripper" in view of the viciousness of the crime.Snowden was found guilty and sentenced to death. He took up residence in Death Row with his door in view of the indoor gallows to which he would make his way to on October 18th, 1957.At 12:05 he was brought into the gallows room and met with the Chaplain. The noose was placed around his neck and the witnesses in the viewing room got their first look at Snowden. The door sprung just 45 seconds later. Down went Snowden and the crowd gasped. It seems the Warden and those responsible for carrying out the deed did not measure Snowden's height or weight, and s such the counter-weight was not calculated correctly. Snowden fell, but he did not break his neck instantly. Instead, in the catch room, he struggled and swung about for 15 minutes until he finally died. Some say it was an oversight, while others believed the authorities did this on purpose to make Snowden's death one of suffering.Snowden's hanging was the last of a total of ten men to occur at the prison and his body was buried in an unmarked grave on prison property. Some believe that Snowden haunts his Cell, Cell Block #5 and the hanging room. But Snowden may not be the only soul still doing time at the Pen. There are a total of 129 recorded deaths within the walls.Due to overcrowding and the treatment of prisoners serious riots occurred in 1952 and again in 1971. The 1973 riots proved to be the end of the Old Idaho Penitentiary as riots burned down several buildings and damaged others beyond repair. The 416 resident inmates were moved to the new Idaho State Correctional Institution south of Boise and the Old Idaho Penitentiary was closed on December 3, 1973, never to see another living soul imprisoned behind its stone walls.If you are interested in the Old Idaho State Penitentiary you can visit them daily where tours are conducted by volunteer staff. Special events around Halloween turn the prison into one goulish haunted attraction. More recently, the Pen has been giving Paranormal Investigation Tours.Special thanks to all those volunteering to keep such a historic gem alive. Thank you to the Idaho State Historical Society for their excellent resources and dedication. We will attach a bonus episode that was produced by the staff of the Idaho State Pen with funding from the Idaho State Historical Society.It focuses in on the prison's only double hanging. If you like what you hear, head over to their youtube page to see additional videos.We will leave you now with the words and memories of prisoners and staff from the Old Idaho State Penitentiary.Until Next Time.....Be good.