In a call placed to 911, a Pennsylvania man told police that he found Bigfoot and had evidence to prove it, sparking viral rumors that the elusive creature had finally been captured. In the 911 transcript, officers discuss the Bigfoot finding, and mention clues that may help explain whether it can finally be confirmed that Bigfoot exists.
Person 1: [An individual] called 911 advising that the contacted the Game Commission to call him back; wants a police officer to come to his residence. Apparently he has proof there of Bigfoot.
Officer: "Bigfoot, right?"
Person 1: "That's affirmative, he has evidence, uh... proving Bigfoot. He would like a police officer to come there."
Officer: "Apparently there's a large amount of smoke in that area..."
The Bigfoot 911 call immediately circulated the Internet, with Bigfoot enthusiasts flocking to Altoona, Pa to get more details on the possible finding. In subsequent weeks, several rumors were started, including that a confirmation that a hunter shot and killed a Bigfoot in Somerset County, which was described as a "dead unknown manlike creature."
Following the discovery and media storm surrounding the alleged capture of Bigfoot, a helicopter was spotted hovering over John Winesickle's home, the man who made the Bigfoot discovery while hiking through the woods. Many Bigfoot conspiracy theories began to emerge, including talk of a false-flag operation intended to push gun control legislation for hunters.
Other conspiracy theories claimed that the FBI and U.S. government carried out a cover-up to hide the Bigfoot discovery, in order to not raise alarm among the public. The official report is that the footprint Winesickle found actually belonged to a black bear. According to reports, Winesickle showed police "picture after picture of alleged footprints caused by what he said is Bigfoot."
"Winesickle took the investigating officer on a path in the woods he regularly walks and showed the officer the tracks, but according to the police report, the investigator concluded the tracks belong to a bear," a source said.
Although bear tracks are often confused for Bigfoot proof, police chief of Paint Township, where the apparent discovery was made, said the 911 call was a rare occurrence. "That's the first time I recall us ever being called out for Bigfoot," Skiles said, while confirming that black bears are frequently spotted in the wooded area.
Pennsylvania Bigfoot Society President, Eric Altman, agreed with investigating officers despite conspiracy theory claims, arguing that the Internet exasperated the situation. "There are conspiracy theorists who say it's a cover-up," Altman said. "But it was blown completely out of proportion."