This Exorcism Consultant Opened Up About The Creepiest Case He Ever Worked On

One of the creepiest exorcism cases that doesn’t get the focus that it deserves is that of Dr. Richard Gallagher’s work with “Julia,” a woman who was possessed by an incredibly intelligent demon. This case is one of the real exorcisms that were worse than The Exorcist, and it completely changed the mindset of a psychiatrist who didn’t believe that people could actually be possessed by demons. The story of Julia is not only one of the worst exorcisms to ever be recorded, but it’s also one of the few stories that delves into what it’s really like to work on an exorcism case. The case spanned multiple exorcisms, and the people who were trying to save Julia lived thousands of miles away from each other. Telling you any more would ruin how weird and crazy this story gets, so read on as this exorcism consultant shares the story of the worst case he ever worked on.

  • The Subject Seemed To Have Uncanny Knowledge

    The Subject Seemed To Have Uncanny Knowledge
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    Gallagher was brought into meet "Julia," a woman who dressed in flowing black robes and put on black eye shadow that went back to her temples. She referred to herself as "the high priestess of a satanic cult," which made Gallagher immediately skeptical of her claims. His skepticism began to fade when he met Julia and she immediately began to point out the secret weaknesses of everyone in the room. After that she began to guess the way that people whom she'd never met had died. Gallagher says that Julia knew that his mother had passed away from ovarian cancer and that the possessed woman was known to speak multiple languages during exorcisms.

  • Julia's Possession Was Different Than A Normal Case

    Julia's Possession Was Different Than A Normal Case
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    One of the major criticisms lobbed at Dr. Gallagher's relationship with Julia is his insistence that she wasn't simply dealing with a major mental episode. He claims that it was much more likely that she was possessed by a demonic entity than it was that she was dealing with a psychotic episode, as Julia's trances were much more intense than a simple disassociation. He wrote in the New Oxford Review: "Mentally troubled individuals often 'dissociate,' but Julia's trances were accompanied by an unusual phenomenon: Out of her mouth would come various threats, taunts and scatological language, phrases like 'Leave her alone, you idiot,' 'She's ours,' 'Leave, you imbecile priest,' or just 'Leave.'" Gallagher continues, saying that Julia made sure to be as sacrilegious during her trances.  

  • Julia Reportedly Levitated As Objects Moved By Themselves

    Julia Reportedly Levitated As Objects Moved By Themselves
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    When Julia's exorcism finally occurred, it allegedly had all the trappings of your classic Hollywood film. The room grew cold in the middle of the summer. Julia taunted Gallagher's team of priests and nurses in voices that didn't belong to her. She began to make guttural, animalistic noises. Supposedly, objects moved around the room at will, and to top it all off, when Julia came out of each one of her "trances" she didn't remember anything that had happened. According to one source, Julia took on an extreme strength, making it so six people had to hold her down. The source also claims that she levitated, however in Dr. Gallagher's article for The Washington Post he says that he never saw anything like that happen. 

  • Julia And Dr. Gallagher Faced Off

    Julia And Dr. Gallagher Faced Off
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    Before Dr. Gallagher's first meeting with Julia, he experienced an incredibly strange evening that would be a precursor for what followed. Gallagher claimed, "The night before I first saw her, our cats went wild in the middle of the night. When I met her the next day, she asked me: ‘Dr. Gallagher, how did you like those cats?” That's not the most auspicious beginning for a relationship, but it seems par for the course when you're dealing with demons. Gallagher continued, "I told her if she was ever involved in doing anything like that again, I would refuse to assess her for her exorcist." 

    That wasn't the only time that Julia messed with Dr. Gallagher's head from thousands of miles away. He claims that one day when he was on the phone with Julia's exorcist, they suddenly heard her voice coming through the receiver. Gallagher says that she was "screaming at the priest in a demonic voice.”

  • Julia Seemingly Displayed Psychic Abilities

    Julia Seemingly Displayed Psychic Abilities
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    Aside from Julia's voices and the horrible things she would say to everyone during her eight exorcisms, she also had a penchant for describing things about the team assembled to help her that no one should know. During Julia's trances she would display psychic abilities that absolutely freaked everyone out. In one case, she locked in on a priest who wasn't even in the house and began to described where he was at and how he was feeling. Another priest who was directly involved with Julia's case was consistently reported on when Julia was in a trance. Despite not knowing that the priest suffered from a chronic illness, she would discuss how he was feeling, what he was doing, and even what he was wearing. 

  • The Demon Appeared To Be Incredibly Intelligent

    The Demon Appeared To Be Incredibly Intelligent
    Photo: Warner Bros. / The Exorcist

    Every case of demonic possession is different. Some demons are lower creatures who are simply lashing out at the corporeal world, while others are incredibly crafty creatures who want nothing more than to cause chaos. The demon inhabiting Julia was definitely an intelligent being that seemed hell-bent on destroying the faith of every member of the exorcism team. Proving the demon's intelligence, it allegedly knew when the priests were trying to trick it by throwing regular water at her and would only react to genuine holy water. She was also able to reveal the facts about the past of the attendees and provide a family history of everyone in the room.