The once Los Angeles county prison – now a preserved historic building and a space currently occupy by the Bilingual Foundation of the Arts, a non-profit company – still have its prisoners and visitors from yester-years roaming in halls and rooms.
Walking through the double glass door entrance, one arrives in the main lobby area where patrons would purchase their tickets and their small snacks from the concession stand, and wait on or chat with other visitors while one waits for the house show to begin.
The last thing a visiting patron to the theatre wants to become aware of are the existing ghosts from the venue’s early days who are keeping a keen eye on one and everyone else in the audience.
At least that’s what Cecilia Garcia, one of the Bilingual company’s worker, who claims to have seen and experienced the presence of ghosts that haunts the former prison.
On the day when Cecilia agreed to give my colleague, Kimberly Cobian and I a tour of the old building, she didn’t hold back on the details of the strange, mysterious happenings she have encountered through out the years of working in the place.
The first ghost story occurred in the back office room, which used to serve as the prison’s record room. Cecilia remembers a day when the back room’s light would mysteriously be turned on when no one from the company had entered or had used the room. She also remembers when the door at the back room would make sudden jolts or pulls and pushes, as if someone on the other end was trying to open the door, when most of the employees have gone home.
Cecilia claims that the ghost in the back office room is a woman because she thinks the ghost from the office is the same one that haunts the woman’s restroom. She recalls a night, while working late in the office, was at the restroom, and found out she ran out of toilet paper. She saw a shadow figure, shaped like a woman who was next to her stall -and at the time didn’t remember she was alone – called out to the shadow to hand her some paper. The shadow listened and handed her some paper from underneath – and then the shadow figure disappeared.
Despite the shadow’s brief disappearance, Cecilia tells me she would hear the fountain knobs turning on their own and hear water dripping from its pipes. When the actresses arrive to perform at the Arts company’s location, the females would be afraid to go and use the restroom alone since they are fully aware of the stories and the odd vibes they feel from the restroom’s area.
The next ghost story Cecilia shares is quite an interesting one since he has appeared to her in complete human form. Well, technically the ghost didn’t show up to Cecilia per se, since he was indirectly introduced to her by one of her friends first, as he screamed and pointed at the ghost at the far end of the dark hall.
The ghost’s name is Blue Boy – or at least he goes by that name – since he gives off a blue glow when he appeared in the dark empty hall, according to Cecilia.
This ghost walks on two legs like a living human being and he has spoken to Cecilia who according to her experience said “it’s like hearing a voice in your head.”
Of course all this sounds completely crazy and hard to believe since most, if not everyone, have seen a ghost before. But I don’t really doubt that a place that’s full of history, like the old Lincoln Heights prison, may have a few unexplainable things happening inside its enclosed walls and windows.
To be continue…
Next post: Part 2 of Ghost Tales from Lincoln Heights Prison, Tuesday, November 1. Stay tuned!