The Old South Pittsburg Hospital in South Pittsburg, Tennessee is claimed to be haunted according to paranormal enthusiast and ghost hunters alike.
But the real evil that haunts the abandoned building is the Ex-Daughter-In-Law of the real owner of the building.
Ghost Hunt Teams, Searchers of the Paranormal, Large Event Companies and even Television Production Companies have all been taken for a ride by a woman who does not even have a lease or any legal or business ties to the building.
Deposits and money received by this business squatter have no paper trail since she is not even legally supposed to be doing business in the building.
From the original article:
The City of South Pittsburg has ordered the closing of the Old South Pittsburg Hospital.
The Holly Avenue facility, which was the municipal hospital for South Pittsburg and the surrounding area until it was closed in 1998, has been an attraction for paranormal “ghost hunters” for several years. It has been featured on television shows and is widely believed to be haunted by the paranormal community.
The City of South Pittsburg received an anonymous call complaining about the condition of the property after a recent paranormal investigation, according to South Pittsburg City Administrator Gene Vess.
“I received a telephone call from East Ridge from someone who had been in there the prior weekend and observed mold,” said Vess. Vess also said someone with this person started suffering respiratory problems shortly after the visit.
The city looked into the operation and discovered that the building was also not zoned properly.
“There’s a multitude of municipal codes they were in violation of,” said Vess. “Number one is zoning. It is zoned (Medical 1) for a hospital. Therefore, you can’t do anything in there that is not related to medical.”
Vess said the alleged operator of the business, Stacey Hayes, (who has changed her name to Stacey Sivley since these legal allegations) also did not have a business license from the city or the State of Tennessee.
“Neither had she filed an EIN (Employer Identification Number), therefore, whatever she was doing in there, she wasn’t collecting sale tax or anything else,” said Vess.
According to property tax records, the building is owned by Dr. Gary Hayes. In an interview with the Independent in October 2016, Stacey Hayes, Dr. Hayes’ ex-daughter-in-law, said she manages the ghost hunting operations at the building.
Stacey Hayes would not answer questions about the issues and provided a contact for Dr. Gary Hayes who did not answer repeated calls for this story.
Vess said although the license and ordinance issues are important, his main problem with the operation was the reports of mold.
“The biggest issue is the environmental issue,” he said. “At the present time, that building is full of black mold. Once I was aware of that, I had no choice but to shut it down.”
Vess said it would take a lot of time to get the ordinances changed and the business license issued. He said in his opinion, the building is shut down indefinitely.
“As far as I know, we have not been in that building as a city at all since it was shut down (in 1998),” he said. “I couldn’t even tell you the condition inside other than we were made aware that black mold was inside there and we went in and observed it.”
Chad Morin, president of Ghost Hunt Weekends, the largest paranormal events company in the world, said they have canceled all events with Old South Pittsburg Hospital. He said his company had 26 dates booked with the facility to offer ghost hunts.
“We’ll end up having a lawsuit on (Stacey Hayes) because she signed a contract and it even says she is supposed to be the person that can sign the contract, and she’s not. Now we have lost revenue,” said Morin.
Morin said his company will lose approximately $30,000 from the cancellations.
Morin said since Stacey Hayes did not have a business license, did not own the building and allegedly had no lease from Dr. Gary Hayes to use the building, she violated his company’s contract.
“Every single thing in our contract, she’s in breach of it,” he said. “She’s not legally bound to agree to the contract.”
Morin said he sees both negative and positive aspects of the issues that have arisen at Old South Pittsburg Hospital.
“It’s a shame it happened the way it did,” he said. “For the people who have never been there, that’s going to be one of the places on your bucket list you (might) never get to do. But, it’s good on the other side because if there is a health hazard in there, people don’t need to be going into the building.
“Our client and guests’ safety are our number one (priority). We can’t have trip hazards or mold hazards,” Morin continued. “We do everything we can to make sure everything is safe for our guests.”
Morin said the City of South Pittsburg has been very helpful and cooperative with his company. He said they are working with any customer who has a reservation with his company for a tour of the hospital to refund the money or reschedule the reservation for another event.
The operators of the Old South Pittsburg Hospital released a statement on their Facebook page on March 22 stating, “There are many rumors swirling across social media and the paranormal community, we would like to lay these to rest. It was brought to our attention that we had a zoning violation. We are diligently working with the State of Tennessee as well as the City of South Pittsburg to have the building rezoned for our commercial endeavor. While this can be a lengthy process, we are confident we will get this done in as timely a manner as possible so we can resume all normal activities.”
The statement goes on to say that management “will make good on the upcoming investigations by issuing a credit towards another date” for anyone who has made a deposit for future investigations.
The statement also seemed optimistic about the businesses returning.
“While the building is closed for business we have our staff cleaning, painting and working on the inside of the building to make your next visit a memorable one,” the statement reads. “In the upcoming year, we have many changes which will be occurring as we look forward to improving your stay as you investigate the paranormal.”
South Pittsburg Police Chief Wayne Jordan would not go into the details about the situation, but he did confirm there was an active investigation into the operation. He also said he has fielded around 11 calls from people filing complaints saying they have money deposited with the operation and they cannot get a phone call returned.
If you have deposits or paid any money and have not received a full refund, please contact Police Chief Jordan at the South Pittsburg Police Department at 423-837-5003 immediately.