Over a year ago, I examined the paranormal stories of the Black-Eyed Children. The Skeptoid podcast also did an episode on them not long ago. It appears that these haunting, demonic, alien, and frightening apparitions have returned to trouble us again! Or, maybe not, let’s take a look!
Stories of the return of the Black-Eyed Kids (BEKs) showed up in my news feeds recently, to my surprise. The report showed up on many sites, but, as is common with these sorts of things, they are all the same article reprinted. I’m going to reference the article as published in the Birmingham Mail, “Black Eyed Child returns to haunt Cannock Chase,” by Mike Lockley.
The article reports that a “leading paranormal investigator has scoured a Staffordshire beauty spot following chilling sightings of a spectre known locally as The Black Eyed Child.”
The remainder of the article consists of anecdotal tales of sightings of the child, reports of which apparently date back 30 years. The investigator in question is Lee Brickley, who is a freelance writer and paranormal researcher; he relates two sightings to the reporter: the recent sighting and one of his own some years back.
The recent sighting, an eye-witness account according to the article, is described by a woman who encountered a BEK while walking in Birches Valley. She speaks of searching for a child after hearing screams:
“We couldn’t find the child anywhere and so stopped to catch our breath.
“That’s when I turned round and saw a girl stood behind me, no more than 10 years old, with her hands over her eyes.
“It was as if she was waiting for a birthday cake.
“I asked if she was OK and if she had been the one screaming. She put her arms down by her side and opened her eyes.
“That’s when I saw they were completely black, no iris, no white, nothing.
“I jumped back and grabbed my daughter. When I looked again, the child was gone. It was so strange.”
Reports of this nature are not the most common of the tales I’ve seen regarding BEKs. More commonly, the stories have the black-eyed kids approaching adults, seeking assistance with something. Sometimes in public or in stores, other times, knocking on the door to someone’s house, asking to be let in. While no story I have read has offered any suggestion as to what might befall someone should they assist a BEK, it is implied that something bad would happen. This particular tale strikes me more as a typical ghost story, however there are common elements to other BEK reports.
This article brings nothing new to the investigations of BEKs and does nothing to change my opinion as to whether or not they are a real phenomenon. The cultural meme of the Black-Eyed Kid is well established by this point. From Internet stories to depictions of demons in supernatural shows and movies, there are plenty of images and stories to influence a memory or an experience.
I would welcome new evidence as to whether or not these children exist as a paranormal phenomenon. All we have, all I’ve ever seen, is reports, anecdotes, and stories. I cannot say that these folks didn’t have an experience, they certainly experienced something. All I can say is that we don’t know what happened for sure, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a paranormal black-eyed kid. Probably not.