The words “never seen again” are the creepiest phrase I’ve ever heard. They show up in childhood fantasy tales, as well as horror stories. So any story, fiction or fact, with those words haunts me. They are creepy and fascinating and a mystery usually not solved.
I’ve heard stories, reports and tall tales about people never seen again. Often they don’t say where the story started from. A lot of these stories are based on at least one ages old urban legend. But, they’re still creepy.
I turned on Tubi and watched a few episodes of Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction last night. One of the episodes, ‘The Kid in the Closet’, was about a boy with a monster in his closet. His older brother teased him about it and then, to prove there was no monster, he went into the closet and shut the door. They heard him making a ruckus, yelling and banging at the door, then it went quiet. The Mother came in to see what was going on. She opened the closet, no one was inside. No older brother. But, his shoes and a pile of the clothes he had been wearing were there, without him.
Police were called, inspected the closet and found no way for him to get out. At the end of the episode they said he was never seen again and claimed this story is based on a true event.
Any time someone is never seen again is creepy. The police thought the boy had run away. On the show they left that sort of hanging, but doubtful. Also, the police had not found any way he would have gotten out of the closet, other than the door. His clothes and shoes were left in the closet. Those two things seem a bit odd, even after I found out more.
It turns out, according to the source I found after a bit of a search, that the boy did run away. So, how did he get out of the closet? The police didn’t notice the ceiling panel when they looked? I guess he was at least wearing his underwear, the show didn’t say all his clothes were left in the closet. So, it is still a little puzzle. It is possible the whole thing really is a hoax, in spite of the show saying it was fact, not fiction.
A bit of digging turns up at least one comment on the show’s IMDB message board, posted on February 12, 2008, in which the commenter shared her correspondence with someone who had worked on Beyond Belief and knew the actual truth:
“The Beyond Belief: fact or fiction story about the monster in the kid’s closet was based on an actual event that I personally investigated,” she was told. “At the time it happened there was no explanation for the boy’s disappearance— until two weeks later when it was learned that he had climbed out of the closet through a ceiling panel and ran away from home. He stayed at a friend’s house surreptitiously until the friend’s mother discovered him hiding in the attic of their home and exposed the ruse.”
The show’s producer wouldn’t discover this very important detail until it was far too late.
Source: Stranger Dimensions – Beyond Belief: The Kid in the Closet