An ABC news affiliate in North Carolina featured an Examiner story about the alleged fraud allegations of former "Paranormal State" star Ryan Buell yesterday. The celebrity ghost hunter was under attack from fans this summer for allegedly cancelling events and withholding refunds. The segment "Troubleshooter: Ryan Buell Fans Want Refunds" aired on Raleigh's ABC11 Eyewitness News on Monday.
I-Team "Troubleshooter" reporter Diane Wilson of ABC affiliate WTVD-TV in the Raleigh-Durham area tried to reach out to Ryan Buell last week regarding alleged fraud allegations. Buell was unable to be reached for comment but Wilson interviewed one of his fans from Ohio who had bought tickets to an event in Chicago.
Buell is a ghost hunter based out of the "Triangle" which is the Raleigh–Durham–Chapel Hill area of North Carolina but his fan-base is nationwide. Buell is known for appearing on the hit A&E paranormal reality show "Paranormal State" with his paranormal research team, the Paranormal Research Society from December 2007 to May 2011. He founded the group when he was a 19-year-old student at Pennsylvania State University.
Earlier this month, former "Paranormal State" television personality Ryan Buell announced on his Facebook and Twitter pages that he was cancelling his upcoming lecture tour that was scheduled in the US for this summer. Buell also posted an apology to his angry fans informing them that health issues are the reason that he cancelled the US and Canada lecture tours this year.
Teresa Harrell said that she paid over $400 for VIP tickets for Buell's "Conversations with the Dead" lecture tour and she drove from Ohio with her husband six hours just to see it.
"I watched all of Ryan Buell's movies that were on TV and I also read his book. They rescheduled the event for like three weeks later and didn't tell anybody what was going on. What I did was call the venue directly and I spoke with the owner and he told me that they had not spoken with him since they had rescheduled the event. He had no deposits or anything and couldn't get a hold of them," Harrell said to Wilson in the interview.
Harrell said that she was able to get a refund after she fought with her credit card company. Other fans that paid with PayPal haven't received refunds yet and are getting together to file a class action lawsuit.
"They've done this across seven states and they've done it to Canada too. Take responsibility for what you've done, we're human we make mistakes, we hurt people. But man up, say I made a mistake, I took money that's not mine or I really thought we could do this but we can't, let's get the refunds out to you people and be sending those checks out," Harrell said.
Investigative reporter and "Troubleshooter" Diane Wilson of Raleigh's ABC 11 Eyewitness News will have more on this story on today at 5 pm.
To file a report, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre can be reached toll-free at 1-888-495-8501 or a report can be submitted online through a form on their website. Additionally the United States Federal Trade Commission can be reached at 1-877-FTC-HELP or a report can be filed online via their website. To contact fraud investigators at theWake County Sheriff's Office in Raleigh, North Carolina, call 919-856-6900 and ask to be connected to someone in the Fraud Unit. The Raleigh Police Department encourages people that have paid for events and haven't received refunds to call and make a police report at 919-996-3335.