William Carlson on Unsplash

Security guards and first responders keep watch over people or property.

Sometimes their shifts begin when the most workers head home for the night.

Working alone in dead silence and in dark places or responding to emergencies can play mind tricks, but these professionals are trained to remain focused.

What they aren't trained for is how to respond to strange phenomena that can only be described as a paranormal disturbance.

Curious to hear from people who work in protective professions, Redditor L3n777 asked:

"Police, security guards, paramedics etc - Have you ever been called out only to realise it was a seemingly paranormal incident? What happened?"

Something spectral or something from another galaxy?

You decide.

The Darting Light

"Marine stationed in Japan back in 2010-12."

"I was military police. One night around 2-3 am we hear over the radio 'uhhhh. Any units seeing the light over the water south?' It was a marine air station based on the southern tip of Japan. We had no flights coming in or going out that night. Everyone knew there shouldn't be a light flying over the waters."

"So about 3 patrol cars met up at the air field where there was a way better view. Sure as sh*t there's a light sitting out over the water blinking slowly off and on. Some guys tried to say it was a star, so we had traffic control cameras from dispatch zoom in on it."

"Turns out it was slowly moving out of the cameras. So while by ehe we couldn't tell it was moving, the cameras picked it up. We sat there kind of amazed for an hour before it went away."

"As we were getting back into the squad car I took a last look at the night sky and saw a small light dart behind some clouds in a movement that didn't make sense. I didn't tel the other guys, just thought there's no way they would believe me."

"Months later I was running on the sea wall and stopped to lay down and catch my breath. Again saw a light, watched it drive into some clouds and then disappear. That was around the time of the tsunami and Fukushima. Super weird."

– Majestic-Science-220

Extra-terror-estrial

"Not a responder, but lived next door to one who is very famous in our hometown for his alien abduction, but there are other stories, too. This all went down in the 80s, rural England, and my memory of the exact details are fuzzy (been a while since anyone has bothered discussing it, small hometown and everyone knows and is over it)."

"The alien abduction story is that he was on the way back from a call out, saw some odd lights on the road ahead and had to stop, a one track road. He went to investigate the lights as any good police officer does, and next thing he knows it's a half hour later and he's back in his car seat, car facing the other way, some odd substance on him, no lights to be seen."

"The police dispatch also confirm that his radio frequency just disappeared for that half hour. The substance was tested and didn't match any known profile (I really have no idea what that really means or what tests were)."

"At around the same time, this officer and some others were called out by a farmer whose cows had disappeared. Yes, very stereotypical cows in a tractor beam story. But the farmer reported them missing, multiple police show up, gate is locked and no cows."

"They all decide to drive around looking for the cows. The paranormal magnet officer reports that thing where you keep trying to drive somewhere but always end up back where you were when it shouldn't be possible on his route, but they all convene back at the field at the end of shift."

"The cows are back, though none of the officers found them and nobody called in to find them. And remember, paranormal officer has seemingly been driving past the field on a loop all night. The farmer was also unaware when they called to ask him. Totally sounds like the farmer pulled a prank, except it was raining that night and there was loads of wet mud building at the edge of the field where the gate is, and not footprints or hoof prints, and the cows were dry, too."

"The last story I have the vaguest recollection of, I think it happened some years earlier and the paranormal officer was called to the discovery site. It is mostly about a different guy, a farmhand who was an immigrant who disappeared without a trace and then appeared several days later and miles away, dead, with burns and another unidentifiable substance all over his body, dumped at the top of a pile of coal."

"Again, no sign of anyone climbing up the very precarious pile of coal. And no sightings of this farmhand getting from the farm to a different town - one road, and he didn't seem to be on it at any point. He was in the same clothes but appeared to have undressed then been redressed by someone else."

"Autopsy couldn't find a cause of death, it wasn't the burns, and he was like, barely dead (no rigor mortis) when discovered. Edit: Should probably add that the official answer to the farmhand death was spontaneous ball lightning, itself a weird theory, and it doesn't explain most of the situation."

"I am not saying aliens but everyone at home is mildly convinced of the aliens."

– bingley777

It all starts with a sound.

After Hours Visitor

"Universal Orlando has a ride that you can hear a little girl laughing and someone running up and down the corridors after the ride closes."

"I've had doors that only lock with a key somehow lock when no one was around. The mechanics only work with ALL the lights on and music blasting."

– Revolutionary-Yak-47

Undetected Visitor

"Unarmed security for a residential building here, this is extremely tame compared to some of the other stories here but this is a pretty salient subject (and I have evidence)."

"My site has a rooftop pool and it's really one of the only major things the management gets anal about when it's supposed to be closed. On a chilly night not too long ago I was posted up in the rooftop stairwell staying warm when I hear a crescendo-ing fit of laughter that goes to the point where the laugher is gasping and choking."

"Kind of weird, but not a big deal considering that people throw parties and whatnot all the time and I could tell it wasn't close enough to be someone horsing around in the pool. Then I just start hearing a bunch of shrieking, and the source of the noise is moving around."

"At this point I step out, and I realize it's coming from the rooftop itself (locked up and only accessible by non-security by scaling a concrete wall). The noise stops and I try to start zeroing from where exactly on this dark, slippery, cold-ass roof the noises were coming from."

"Then I see some footprints on the roof that were not there before. Barefoot prints with no heel print (tiptoeing). Footprints that are dirtier than the surface of the roof itself. Noped my way right back inside because it was an hour before clock-out"

"I'd much rather have something paranormal than a methhead on the roof running around with no shoes."

– Insominus

These Redditors had no clue who or what was moving things around.

Ghost Driver

"Yyyooooooo lol you might not believe me but at universal studios Hollywood the lower lot we use golf carts or Ford explorers to patrol. There is a golf cart that drives it self at night."

"We have the number of the cart on camara and I sh*t you not it's been 'no operational' for over 6 years. (Some one wrecked it on lot) thing drives around jaw lake and residential area at night. Scary sh*t is I patrol up there alot for my swing shift never seen it but camaras catch it zooming past use when we are driving lol"

– Fearsnodeath

Maybe The Building's Old

"I know the feeling, especially with the doors. the building I work in has these sliding doors. The outer doors locks at 8pm but the inner doors stay unlocked. Sometimes around 1 am or 2 am the inner door will open like someone just walked past it... Once the locked outer door slid open like someone walked up to it... "

"That night I cut power to the doors for the rest of the shift. Same with the phone, except we can see who is calling in, whether it is an outside line or if it is coming from in the building. At least once a week there will be a call from one of the offices in the middle of the night, the first night it happened I assumed it was housekeeping, next morning I spoke to head of housekeeping and was told all housekeeping leaves at 8pm, same with kitchen staff, and maintenance."

"Management is out the door by 5pm, only staff in the building after 8pm is myself and a handful of nurses, and it can't be any of them as they are on another floor, I have the only key to the offices the call comes from, and I would see if anyone entered or exited the offices. Same with the alarms, had the fire alarm go off last week and it prompted all the fire doors to close, as soon as those doors closed it stopped."

"I checked, nothing in the building to trigger it, opened the fire doors back up, sat down at the desk, 5 minutes later alarm is shutting the doors again for no reason."

"So only thing I can figure at this point is this building I work in is an old building and it probably has some bad wiring somewhere that keeps setting things off."

– CylonsInAPolicebox

I always imagine security guards wander dark corridors at night illuminated only by their flashlights to investigate strange sounds.

If that is a reality, to them I tip my hat.

Because regardless of earning a decent wage, I would never want to subject myself to witnessing horror movie tropes like fresh footprints when no one else is in the building, or a strange point of light darting around that is not traced back to my flashlight, or slamming doors not due to mechanical failure.

To all responders in the field, thank you for your service.

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