It was a shocking news report—word spread quickly around the globe that a massive grave of bodies was about to be uncovered in a home outside Houston, Texas. Local police, sheriff, FBI agents, and helicopters all converged on the scene.
At one point it was reported that there were up to 30 bodies buried in a mass grave, including those of children.
Gena Bankson and her husband, Joe own the home and say that bogus tip called in to local authorities has ruined their lives.
At first, police thought they were onto something. They found blood smeared on a back door and the stench of rotting flesh coming from the home. But it was all just a wild goose chase. The police never found a single body, much less dozens of mutilated children.
"It's not home anymore," said Gena
The Banksons say the blood on the door was from an acquaintance who had cut himself. And Joe Bankson explained the rotten odor: "We had our electricity worked on and the freezer never got plugged back in so all the meat we had in there rotted."
The Banksons are truck drivers and were on the road when the search took place. They say when they got back home, the house had been trashed. But the real damage has come with public perception. They say people are still suspicious of them and they're thinking of selling the house.
"I didn't want to come home," said Gena
So the question remains, why did police take a tip from a psychic so seriously?
Lisa Guerrero spoke with Captain Rex Evans of the Liberty County Sheriff's Department.
"In law enforcement, we're obligated to investigate any type of allegation," Evans told Guerrero.
Evans also justified the large number of law enforcement personnel used at the Bankson's home. But the Banksons still have questions for that so-called psychic tipster.
"It's just pretty sad when someone can call in something that's a total crock, and get away with it," said Joe.
Authorities have decided not to reveal the identity of the psychic, and she will not be facing any charges.