‘Paranormal Witness’ takes on the haunted Capitol Theater in Salt Lake City, Utah in this 3rd installment of season 2. The events in question took place in 2006.
The episode starts out with a cop, Officer Dave Murphy being trained for the overnight security detail at the theater. The job is simple enough. After arriving each evening he is to secure the building with a complete sweep and then do periodic walks through the building to make sure it’s secure. The training officer, Officer Matthews, meets him at the door and begins to show him the lock-down procedure.
Murphy almost immediately sensed that there was something that Matthews wasn’t telling him but was eager to learn the job and initially kept the suspicions to himself.
Within a few days, Murphy felt comfortable enough to make the rounds on his own while leaving Matthews in the control room observing the monitors. While securing the basement or catacombs, Murphy hears a door slam behind him. He turns to find the previously opened men’s room door, shut. He contacts Matthews in the control room and Matthews decides to join him. WIthout waiting for back-up, Murphy proceeds. He goes into the restroom and there is no one there. The door itself is on a hydraulic hinge so it’s not possible for it to slam. He feels a rush of freezing cold air and the sense of evil. Matthews joins him and they search the basement but no one is found. Murphy feels foolish but Matthews says nothing. He would later recall that he felt sympathetic but needed to maintain credibility as his training officer.
Two days later, Matthews is in the control room alone when he hears voices. He traces their origin and there is nothing there. The basement room he is in smells strongly of smoke though there is no true origin to the smoke. Matthews would later say that he at times questioned his own sanity.
At one point, Murphy overhears a man talking at the station about the Capitol Theater and ghosts. Murphy pulls him aside and listens to what he has to say. The man is the accountant at the theater and decided to work late to catch up on a few things. While he was working he heard the elevator. This was unusual because he thought he was the only one in the building. After the elevator reached his floor the door opened and no one was there. After a minutes the man went to investigate. He gets on the elevator, looking around to see if perhaps a button is stuck. The doors close when the elevator is summoned to the basement. Once arriving in the basement the many leaves the elevator to look for the person who called it. There is no one so he returns to the office, explaining it away as a glitch in the elevator. Once he returns to his office he sees the filing cabinet drawers open and slam closed on their own. He immediately leaves the theater.
Murphy feels relieved to hear this because it validates what he saw and it gives him the courage to bring the matter up with Matthews. Matthews admits that the strange episodes have gone on since the first night he worked there. Murphy decided to call his friend Greg, a sensitive. Neither he or Matthews tells Greg what has gone on at the theater. They just invite him to take a walk through it with them; sort of a personal tour type of thing. Greg joins them on the tour and ‘sees’ people, hears voices and smells smoke that the others can’t.
After Greg’s visit things got worse. The county installed infrared cameras that allows the cameras to see in the dark. One night Matthews notices that there appears to be someone sitting in a seat in the theater as though he’s watching a show. He zooms in on the figure and it seems to be a man. At that point the man vanishes and then suddenly the face appears to fly right in front of the camera. Matthews refused to ever work in the theater again.
A few days after Matthews quit, Murphy is in the control room when he hears ragtime music. He follows it to the piano it’s playing on and is watching it as it stops. He immediately leaves the theater and tells his boos that if he is ever assigned to the theater he’ll quit.
Josh Thomas is chosen to replace Murphy as security to the theater. His first night there he is doing his walk through the building and Murphy calls to check on him. As they are talking, Thomas mentions that the elevator is moving. Sensing the problems about to start, Murphy races to the theater. When he arrives Thomas meets him at the door, wide-eyed and frightened. As they are walking through the theater together, Thomas hears whispering. Thinking it’s Murphy, he tells him to knock it off. Murphy and Thomas are discussing the matter on the stage when Thomas whispers that he sees someone behind Murphy. Murphy turns and sees nothing, though he believes Thomas.
Shortly after that night, Murphy is seeking information on the theater when he is sent to a man who worked there for decades. Murphy learns that there was a horrible fire in the theater back in the 1940s. It started in the room where the smoke is always smelled and one man lost his life in that room. Even though the events have been explained, the paranormal activity continues and those that work there late at night often witness the events mentioned in this episode of ‘Paranormal Witness’.