When Derek and Maria Broad-dus bought their six-bedroom home in Westfield, New Jersey, in 2014. They fulfilled a lifelong dream — they thought it would be the perfect place for their three kids to grow up. but soon after closing the deal, reality revealed that this was actually a nightmare. As the family began receiving letters from “The Watcher," a shadowy figure who cryptically referred to "secrets" hidden in the house.
Just a few days after moving in on June 2, they received the first of many disturbing letters.
the letter read, "My grandfather watched the house in the 1920s and my father watched in the 1960s. It is now my time. I have been put in charge of watching and waiting for its second coming.""Do you need to fill the house with the young blood I requested? Once I know their names I will call to them and draw them out to me."
"Who has the bedrooms facing the street? I'll know as soon as you move in … It will help me to know who is in which bedroom then I can plan better."
"Have they found out what is in the walls yet? In time they will … I am pleased to know your names now and the name of the young blood you have brought to me … Will the young bloods play in the basement?"
"All of the windows and doors in 657 Boulevard allow me to watch you and track you as you move through the house.
Unspecified Date: (Upset of the home improvements made)
"You have changed it and made it so fancy. It cries for the past and what used to be in the time when I roamed its halls … When I ran from room to room imagining the life with the rich occupants there … And now I watch and wait for the day when the young blood will be mine again."
“It has been years and years since the young blood ruled the hallways of the house. Have you found all of the secrets it holds yet? Will the young blood play in the basement? Or are they too afraid to go down there alone,” “I would [be] very afraid if I were them. It is far away from the rest of the house. If you were upstairs you would never hear them scream.”
"Who am I? I am the Watcher."
With the family members eventually reaching their breaking point, they went to live with Maria’s parents. The Broaddus first attempt to sell the home, came to no avail. As they felt they had to disclose the watcher’s existence to potential buyers…which cause the buyers to run for the hills. It should be noted that the family bought the home for nearly 1.4 million.
The Broad-dus family contacted the home's previous owners to see if they, too, had been subjected to The Watcher's torment. Andrea Woods, who had lived at the home with her husband, John, told the Broaddus family she once received a letter from a person claiming it was their turn to "watch" the house. But Andrea said it was the only such letter she received in 23 years at the Westfield property and she ended up just throwing it away.
But the Broaddus family took that to mean that the Woods knew about the Watcher and chose not to disclose it to the potential new owners. So, they sued.
Another letter seemed to confirmed their suspicion when it said:
"I asked the Woods to bring me young blood…[I] have been in control of 657 Boulevard for the better part of two decades now. The Woods family turned it over to you it was their time to move on and kindly sold it when I asked them to.”
Though the woods did admit to receiving only one letter, they completely denied any wrongdoing and counter-sued the Broaddus family, stating they’ve been damaged by all the negative press.
increasingly desperate the Broaddus family then called in several experts -- including a former FBI agent -- to crack the case. But that investigation has stalled and only succeeded in ruling a few suspects out. With the only real clue that was disclosed being a bit of DNA evidence that the letter contained. Which seems to be female DNA, and it didn't match Maria Broaddus. So, the Watcher could be a lady, but who or where she is wasn't disclosed. Thus far, no one has been charged with anything in the case, and no suspects have been revealed.
Some neighbors have even accused the family of making the whole story up. With other’s speculating that perhaps the Broaddus family just wants their money back, while still maintaining ownership of the house. Others speculate it's all just some viral marketing scheme, or a Hollywood exec who wants to make this into the next Amityville Horror. There's some slight truth to this, since a number of big time movie people have allegedly expressed interest in turning The Watcher into a major film. With blumhouse,New Line, and Universal all interested in bringing this horrific tale to life. My theory is a rival real estate dealer being behind the letters to drive price of the house way down to scoop it up for themselves.
There’s a natural tendency to say, ‘I’ve lived here for 35 years; nothing’s happened to me,’” Derek Broaddus said. “What happened to my family is an affront to their contention that they’re safe, that there’s no such thing as mental illness in their community. People don’t want to believe this could happen in Westfield.”
Since the Broaddus family could not sell the house. they decide to tear the place down. The family requested permission from the city to see if they can destroy the creepy house and build two smaller homes on the lot. But the neighbors were not pleased, complaining that the idea of having two smaller homes on this street of near mansions was just too disturbing and It would be terrible for the neighborhood. LOL like a crazed stalker wasn’t…but as long as the lane still looks nice.
The city sided with the residents and declined the request. The Broaddus family sued the city of westfield. (the end results was not stated)
With the family no longer living at the home, instead opted to start renting it out. Derek Broaddus himself stated that he and his wife try to avoid the house by all means, unless they absolutely have to…noting that the family is losing money, as the rental payments do not cover the mortgage.
One day after the new tenants moved in, Derek went to the house to try and chase away some squirrels who’d taken up residence on the roof. But when he got there, one of the renters handed him a letter addressed to the “vile and spiteful Derek and his wench of a wife Maria.”
“You wonder who The Watcher is? Turn around idiots," the letter said. "Maybe you even spoke to me, one of the so called neighbors who has no idea who The Watcher could be. Or maybe you do know and are too scared to tell anyone. Good move.”
Derek Broaddus brought the letter to police, but investigators came up empty again.
After that event the house remained empty since the letter arrived for years after. Until February 1, 2017 a new tenant “chris” moves I and received a letter directed to the Broaddus family…which according to their lawyer was the worst one yet. "This letter contained specific threats and was more derogatory and sinister than any of the previous letters." The content of the letter wasn't disclosed, and police declined to comment on any specifics or new information on the case. When the reporters interviewed the new tenant christ about his thoughts…he response back with a “ehh I don’t care…it’s not my problem”. Lol