INSIDE EDITION Investigates Psychic Detectives Who Claim to Find Missing Persons
John and JoAnn Lowitzer have been searching for their 17-year-old daughter Alexandria (Ali) since she vanished in April, 2010.
But when the case made national news, the Houston parents say they became inundated with calls from so-called psychic detectives. They say some even showed up at their front door promising their psychic visions could help bring their daughter home.
"He guaranteed me that he'd find Ali in three days. I mean what parent wouldn't be excited to hear that you were going to have your daughter home in three days?" said JoAnn.
Mark Klaas, whose daughter Polly was abducted and killed more than 20 years ago, warns families to avoid psychics, saying they prey on the desperate and send police on one wild goose chase after another.
"They descend like vultures," he told INSIDE EDITION. "Never in the history of the world has a psychic solved a missing child case. Never."
But countless psychic crime fighters like Portland, Oregon clairvoyant Laurie McQuary claim they've helped solve hundreds of missing person cases.
McQuary says she has been in the psychic detective business for over 30 years.
So we decided to see what would happen when we asked a psychic detective to help solve a missing person's case.
Posing as the distraught brother of a missing child, we sent a producer to meet with McQuary.
Our producer showed her a photo of a missing girl and the psychic agreed to take the case for $400.
"I think it's solvable," McQuary said, upon reviewing the case.
But what McQuary didn't know was that the photograph our producer gave her was actually a snapshot of INSIDE EDITION's Chief Investigative Correspondent Lisa Guerrero as a child.
"I don't believe she's alive. I'm sorry. I believe that it was a violent passing," McQuary said.
McQuary's "sixth sense" told her the girl in the photograph was brutally murdered and sexually assaulted.
"I think she was hit in the head with a rock," said McQuary.
But her visions didn't end there. Pointing out a remote location on a map, she even said she could help bring the girl's body home.
The next day McQuary sat down with INSIDE EDITION's Lisa Guerrero for an interview to talk about the work of psychic detectives.
"I just had a gentleman in yesterday. 30 years ago his sister disappeared," she said.
She soon began talking about a recent case. But clearly her psychic abilities didn't tell her that Lisa Guerrero was actually the girl in the picture.
"One of the first things I do in a case, Lisa, is I always make sure people know if I feel the person is living or not," McQuary explained.
"So you always know when you talk to a family member when you start a case, you'll know if this person is dead or alive?" Guerrero asked.
"Yes," said McQuary. "And that's the point."
"Every time?" pressed Guerrero.
But apparently McQuary's psychic abilities didn't see this coming:
"Laurie, I'm going to show you something. Does this girl look familiar to you?" asked Guerrero, holding up the picture INSIDE EDITION's producer showed McQuary the day before.
"Yes she does. I worked this case," confirmed McQuary.
"This is a girl who you said was beaten and killed," Guerrero said. "This little girl is me and you told somebody that she is dead."
"Wait a minute, you didn't disappear?" McQuary asked.
"I'm right here," Guerrero said.
"Well, that's interesting, isn't it," said McQuary.
"How do you explain being completely wrong?" Guerrero asked.
"I can't explain it. I can't explain it. Okay, you know what dear, I think we're done," said McQuary, and then stood up to go.
"You're taking advantage of desperate people with a bunch of hocus pocus aren't you?" Guerrero asked her.
"No I'm not," said McQuary. "I think we'll go, thank you. It's been an interesting experience. You all have a lovely, lovely evening."
JoAnn Lowitzer told INSIDE EDITION, "Until I see my daughter physically, I'm not going to believe anything that any of them say."
Altogether, ten different psychics told our producer that the girl in the photo of Lisa Guerrero had been murdered. The FBI tells INSIDE EDITION they are "not aware of any criminal investigation that has been resolved as a direct result of information provided from a psychic.
For more information on the case of Ali Lowitzer, please click the link below to go to her parents' Facebook page.