On The Beat: 10/24

A night with POOP

By Jim Bucher

As promised a couple weeks back, we needed to see for ourselves if a gangster’s ghost really appears at a local haunt.

To get you caught up, my buddy, Dave Miller, with the City of Moraine, informed me that none other than reputed Chicago mobster George ‘Bugs’ Moran held up a local tavern, and kidnapped the owner. He was subsequently tried, convicted, and sentenced to a long prison term, but passed away a short time later.

This was the crime guy’s final heist, and supposedly, his ghost appears at the former Silas Tavern, later John Bulls, and now todays Upper Deck Tavern in Moraine.

Employees and patrons have seen, heard, and experienced what is best described as paranormal activity.

Well, Dave and fellow ghost hunter Jim Hall invited me back along with my friends Jeff Klaene, Mike Sopronyi, and The Upper Deck’s manager Tammy Brackney, so that we could all take part in a ghost-hunting jaunt.

By the way, Dave and Jim are part of POOP. Let me explain, POOP is not what you’re thinking, but rather ‘Paranormal Of Ohio Professionals’ and they back up the name with video and audio recorders, some sort of paranormal meter gizmo, and other tools of the trade. Who ‘ya gonna call …POOP. Sorry, couldn’t resist.

Well, we meet at the bewitching hour of midnight, what else?

After a couple of ‘spirits’ at the bar, you know to set the mood, we’re off in mostly dark conditions, with my trusty iPhone in the video mode recording our adventures. For more, check out my Facebook page if you dare.

We begin walking through the bar area to the stairs and the second floor when Dave tells me about a murder that happened here in the 1960s.

“Gentleman by the name of Roy Rogers, not the famous cowboy, was gunned down in cold blood.” He said while showing us crime scene photos. Pretty grisly.

Tammy then shares about some weird happenings outside the tavern.

“I and a co-worker both received phone calls from the phone here at the tavern. Weird thing was, the calls came after we closed, locked up, and alarm set. Sure enough the caller ID read Upper Deck, with no one on the line, but you could tell someone was there.” She said.

After the goosebumps subsided, we headed upstairs where apartments once were.

“Charles Barrett and Gary Barton, both who passed on, were longtime tenants here. Some of the weird things we experience could be their spirits hanging around.” Brackney said.

Speaking of, another story is that a man hung himself in the upstairs bathroom too.


Tammy also says years ago a shadowy figure appeared and ran out the back door.

I apologized to clear the matter up, “That was me trying to skip out on my bill.” Ah, restless youth.

She also shared what appeared to be a man in a pin stripped suit that you could see right through. Bugs maybe?

After some elevated readings on that paranormal meter deal, and a visit to the spooky-looking basement, we came up empty, and so too did a couple bottles of spirits.

Before we call it a night, or rather early morning, Dave and Jim leave some POOP…wait, that doesn’t sound right, rather a few of their audio recorders all around the tavern.

Maybe, just maybe, Bugs and company won’t come out with a crowd around, or possibly they’re a little camera shy, so the recorders will pick up where we left off.

Dave reports in the next day.

“Buch, just came back from giving my Ghost Hunting Talk/PowerPoint Presentation at the Moraine Recreation Center.  Had about 40 people attend.  It was lots of fun. My last case that I presented was Upper Deck.” He said.

Dave spent several hours watching video and listening to tape recorders and is about 75 percent done, but what he didn’t tell us, is something strange happened while we were there.

“Only one possible evidence thus far. I had placed the tape recorder on the top of the stairs leading into the second floor, and heard an unexplained bang and a short time later, and a second bang. It sounded like a door slamming each time. No one was upstairs at the time, everyone was on the first floor. We would not have heard this slamming being on that first floor.” Dave said.

Glad he didn’t tell us then, because the next thing on the recording would be me girl-screaming.

And the ghost busting continues. More to come.



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For over 25 years, Jim Bucher has been a regionally known and loved local television icon. “Buch’s” followers describe him as trustworthy, fun, the guy next door, a friend and role model. You can promote your business with Buch and grab your customer’s attention! Reach DCP freelance writer Jim Bucher at JimBucher@DaytonCityPaper.com.

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