The Vallecas case: the true story behind Veronica movie

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The Vallecas Case is named after the Madrid neighborhood where, in an apartment in Calle Luís Marín 8, a repeated sequence of paranormal phenomena took place, requiring even police intervention. It is one of the most famous cases among lovers of occult cases in Spain, and it has gone down in history for being the first case of paranormal phenomena to be documented in an official police report. The movie Veronica, directed by Paco Plaza (REC) and produced by Netflix, is inspired by this story, even if the events shown in the film are quite different than the real story.

The protagonist of the Vallecas Case is Estefanía Gutierrez Lázaro, a Madrid-born teenager who lived with her family in that apartment in Vallecas. Estefanía begins to be interested in occult phenomena and one day, at school, she takes part of a spiritual evocation with an Ouija board, together with two schoolmates. A teacher found them and tore the Ouija board apart. The girls present that day said that they saw smoke emanating from the glass of the Ouija board, and Estefanía inhaled that smoke.

From that moment, the adolescent begins to suffer from insomnia, hallucinations and epileptic seizures. Estefanía described strange human forms that came to visit her at night, with no face, wearing a cloak, asking her to come with them. The parents took her to different hospitals, trying to find the reason for her illnesses, but the doctors were never able to find anything. During the final peak of his attacks, on July 13th, 1991, Estefanía violently attacked his sister Marianela, who ended up on the floor, with foam coming out of her mouth. The day after, on July 14th, Estefanía had a serious attack of catalepsy: she is taken to the hospital in a state of coma, and she dies that night. The autopsy fails to explain the reasons for the death, mentioning “sudden and suspicious death.”

From the moment when Estefanía dies, the paranormal phenomena in the Gutierrez house escalated. The mother hears the screaming voice of Estefanía calling her from the rooms of the house, the laughter of an old man crossing the walls, glass breaking without explanation, objects moving, doors opening and closing on their own. One night, the mother hears someone touching her hands and feet while she sleeps. Another night, the little daughters wake up terrified, with their wrists being slammed violently against the wall. On November 1st, 1993, two years after Estefanía’s death, his photo hanging in the living room caught fire, and the part that burned was just the one depicting his face, while neither the frame nor the nearby objects showed any damage.

On November 27th, 1992, the Gutierrez family decided to call the police. Inspector José Negri and his team arrived on site in the night, finding parents and children outside the house, in the rain, terrified. While a couple of agents will stay with their parents and listen to the whole story from their mouths, Inspector Negri and two other agents entered the apartment.

The report written by the inspector after the inspection has become a cult object among occultists. That report describes the door of a wardrobe that opens violently, despite being locked a few seconds before, almost hitting the face of the agents. It talks about loud noises coming from the balcony, where however there was nothing, and a strange brown slime that had formed on a bedside table. The report also describes a crucifix, which was hung on the wall when the agents arrived and was then found on the ground: the crucifix was torn from the wood on which it was mounted, and the scratches of three claws were clearly visible on the wall where it was hung, as if they ripped it from the wall. The agents also inspected the bathroom, according to the family the most haunted place in the house, and felt a sudden drop in temperature never felt before in their life.

A page of the police report

The agents left the apartment in a hurry, aware that they cannot do anything. Shortly afterwards, the Gutierrez family will sell their home and move away, definitively stopping paranormal events. The new hosts will never witness any inexplicable phenomenon.

The Vallecas case is one of the most famous cases of paranormal phenomena in Spain. It was documented by national police officers, who normally aren’t easily impressed, and who couldn’t not be influenced by the stories related to that apartment as they knew nothing of what had happened. Some time later, Estefanía’s mother was subjected to a psychological examination, which will find signs of emotional instability, anxiety and need for attention, suggesting that in some way she may have accentuated the magnitude of the events to which he witnessed. However, the events described by the police report were unrelated to the stories told by the mother, and should be interpreted as objective facts, actually happened.

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