Not too long ago we skimmed through the urban legends surrounding the state of Wisconsin. Seems like we might have skipped past the town of Mineral Point, Wisconsin and missed one very interesting legend. So we’ve flown back from Europe long enough to check out what has come to be known as the Mineral Point Vampire.
First Sighted In The 1980s
Ah, the decade of the 1980s. Big hair, big mobile phones, cool music, awesome Schwarzenegger movies. Hang on a sec, I’m having a moment here…
Ok, back to Mineral Point. It has a vampire problem that dates back to around 1981. In fact, the entire state once attempted to make vampires illegal. That can make a nocturnal blood-sucker feel downright unwelcome.
And picked upon too, because Mineral Point is also home to a pair of other legends: The Ridgeway Phantom and the very haunted Walker House. And you don’t hear the state legislature making those two illegal, do you?
The Vampire Debuts
John Pepper was a police officer for Mineral Point back in 1981 when he was called out to Graceland Cemetery to investigate a suspicious person wandering the grounds on a dark snowy night. Several people had called the station about a vampire walking among the graves.
Upon arriving, Pepper actually spotted what he believed to be a vampire and took off in pursuit. However, the vampire proved to be quick and elusive and evaded capture…by leaping over a six-foot fence.
Pepper filed his report and the next day when he and several other officers examined the area they found a set of footprints leading up to the fence. But they found no prints on the other side.
The Vampire Returns
The vampire had disappeared, without a trace, and remained that way for 23 years. Long enough for locals to think that the whole thing had been a hoax. But in 2004 several witnesses reported a creepy looking man attacking residents of an apartment near Graceland Cemetery.
The attacker would jump from a tree and land near his victims. Mineral Point PD was once again dispatched and discovered a man that matched the reports of the witnesses in 2004, as well as Officer Pepper’s description from 1981.
Once again they gave chase and once again their prey eluded capture. Only this time
After police spotted the vampire in 2004, he fled again and officers gave chase. This time he launched himself up and over a 10-foot fence with seemingly little effort.
Just like in 1981, footprints were found leading up to the wall, several people had seen the jump and no tracks were found on the other side of the barrier.
The vampire went into hiding for four years this time around before popping back up. But he apparently was tired of being chased, because this time around he began stalking his victims and approaching from behind.
Brandon Heinz took his girlfriend, Jamie Marker, fishing only to hook a vampire instead. They heard him before they actually saw him and what they saw was pretty scary. As the vampire ran toward them, Heinz hurled a flashlight at the creature before he and his companion ran for their lives. They reached the safety of the car only a few seconds ahead of the vampire.
For a third time, MPPD investigated a sighting. They found the couple’s abandoned fishing gear on the jetty. But they never found the flashlight or the vampire.
Maybe we should just keep driving on through Mineral Point. Until they finally run this legend to ground, eh?