Crawford Road

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

The article I wrote is based on the history of horrors that had taken place on a dark road in Yorktown, Virginia. It is known to be one of the most haunted roads in the state of Virginia, also sitting where multiple battles of the "Revolutionary War" and the "American Civil War" had--gruesomely--occurred.

Crawford Road

 

[Date: 8-2-2020]

 

A road in Yorktown, Virginia is known for being one of the most haunted in the state, with a miniature bridge built far back in the early years—the Nineteen-Thirties. There’s been several cases of homicide within the past ten years. The murders never stop. The overpass is heavily known for a sad story of a bride hanging herself on the day of her wedding, from the Tour Road bridge. The Ku Klux Klan has also been mentioned of hanging people off it.

On that road is a dark world where many who’ve driven near the bridge have lost complete power of their vehicle; some have even lost control of their vehicles not far from the overpass, now covered in graffiti. This is a highly dangerous road for taking a trip down into to camp out for the experience of paranormal activity. The deaths are nothing to be taken as fictional.

To those who have been killed on Crawford Road, even so long ago, you are not forgotten. One of the latest known homicides found about Crawford Road is about two people involved in killing a teenager on that exact road four years ago, in Twenty-Sixteen. Some of the well-known homicides of this road hold the death of a man named Jimmy Johnson in Nineteen-Ninety, the Nineteen-Ninety-Six abduction of airman Eric Nesbitt, the body found of a woman named Tonya Lane, and more.

“The Devil’s Highway” is a nickname given to the dark, historic, Crawford Road—Virginia State Route 637. As far as the haunting goes, ghosts of Union soldiers from the American Civil War have actually been spotted walking across the overpass, belonging to Tour Road. Some people call it “Crybaby Bridge” after the paranormal experience of hearing a crying toddler from others who’ve spent time by the bridge during the night. There's an old story of a lady running from the Ku Klux Klan with her baby, eventually throwing her own child into a river not far—hoping to save it.

Austin Baxley, the teenager killed in Twenty-Sixteen, was only eighteen years of age when he was shot in the head and torso—left dead on Crawford Road near the bridge. Found guilty for the homicide is a lady named Amina Washington and a guy named Julian Rios. Around midnight, his body was found. Information was given that they plotted for weeks on taking his life.

James “Jimmy” Johnson was a fifty-eight-year-old man trying to sell his silver Nineteen-Eighty-Nine Mercedes “Benz” to a man named J.C. Giles, who claimed to be an Insurance Executive who had recently traveled from Atlanta, Georgia. For forty-six thousand and five hundred dollars, Giles agreed to the deal if his wife would like it. Johnson was found dead with his hands behind his back in handcuffs and legs taped together on the Sixth of February in Nineteen-Ninety, which had been a week after his disappearance. On Crawford Road, his corpse laid with bullet wounds in the chest.

The body of Johnson was found by a crew who were on Crawford Road to remove a fallen tree, which had blocked the roadway. The corpse of, twenty-year-old, Tonya Lane was found on Crawford Road a while later. Evidence has led to, twenty-five-year-old, Juannito Edwards as the killer—responsible for both murders.

Tonya Lane, even younger, disappeared on June the Fifth, Nineteen-Eighty-Nine. It was said that she was never seen after dropping off her child, that was three at the time, to a babysitter. Her mother had received chilling calls about her daughter lying dead in some woods between Williamsburg and the North Carolina state-line. Her body was found less than half-a-mile from where Johnson’s body was discovered, on February Second of Ninety-One, covered in wounds by gunfire—same as Jimmy Johnson.

Behind the death of Tonya Lane is a story far deeper than just being at the wrong place and the wrong time. Up north, in New York City, her boyfriend at the time would be the brother of Juannito. Involving her boyfriend, would be a homicide she had witnessed—and testified against him in a New York court in front of a jury. He was arrested in New York City for holding connections with the homicide.

On the very day of her disappearance, there was a phone-call made by Tonya during the evening in Virginia, communication with her mother in New York; it had disconnected. Less than a tenth-of-a-mile away from her apartment in the Lee Hall area of Newport News, the bluely coated Nineteen-Eighty-Nine Ford “Escort” registered in her boyfriend’s name had been found around the woods of Curtis Drive and Ripley Street with, both, the engine running and the windshield wipers active. The vehicle had ghosted away before the Blue had realized it was a leading clue to her disappearance. By two different officers, the vehicle was seen.

Juannito Edwards was arrested at his home, according to a York sheriff. He was given two life terms and twenty-two years in prison. It was an episode in Nineteen-Ninety-Three of “America’s Most Wanted” airing on FOX TV where clues to the unsolved murder of Johnson had been exposed. The police of the area received sixty-four calls from across the country. A tip by a viewer eventually highlighted the killer to be Juannito Edwards, who now lives behind bars.

Even with all of the known homicides, there’s still a high chance of more criminal activity on Crawford Road without ever being discovered. There could be more bodies lying around Crawford Road, just never found. Over the past thirty years, tons of bodies and skeletal remains have been found in that exact area. Not every killer gets caught for their actions, keep that in mind. It’s a wild world we live in, knowing murders happen every day and every second.

It was in Nineteen-Ninety-Six when Eric Nesbitt, an airman, was kidnapped at a convenience store in Hampton, Virginia, which isn’t very far from Crawford Road. The long road, itself, sits on, both, Yorktown and the city of Newport News. From the Newport News side, it’s named Crafford Road—beginning from Yorktown Road. Rewinding back to the Nesbitt case, information is given that the airman was being robbed by a group of two, Daryl Adkins and William Jones, before being abducted—with a firearm included.  His body was later found on the, darkly, Crawford Road with eight holes in his body.

Long ago, Civil War battles had taken place in that exact area. Some people have said they’ve heard the sounds of warfare and seen the ghosts of soldiers from the very old age. As spooky as that sounds, it’s best not to drive down Crawford Road during the night. The narrow road has no streetlights with a width wide enough for a single line. It’s been told that if you drive on Crawford Road at night, park your vehicle under the Tour Road bridge, turn off the engine, and shut off your lights, you’ll hear angered slaves and see them getting hung off of the bridge---which may sound a bit far out for a bridge constructed into place in the Thirties. You may be paranormally attacked as well, also said.

As far as the bride who hung herself off Tour Road Bridge, from many, it has been said that they’ve seen a figure falling from the bridge as they were approaching it. Even stranger, they all say the figure vanishes before even crashes to the ground. This is nothing to play around with. This very road is drowned with paranormal activity and extremely dangerous to ride down during the night.

Yorktown, itself, had many battles and was put at siege by, general at the time, George Washington and his combined troops of seventeen thousand French and American Continental soldiers. The siege was in Seventeen-Eighty-One, beginning in September and ending in October, which he had won against General Lord Cornwell of the British Army, along with nine thousand soldiers of his. It is considered as one of the most important battles of the Revolutionary War.

There were more known crimes committed, especially a brutal one that was of Shawn Mabry, a nineteen-year-old, who was beaten to death and left around the edge of the woods. It may have been several days or several weeks that he laid dead before being found, which was said by Lieutenant Willafort of the York County Sheriff’s Office. This had taken place a few years, or slightly longer, after the Eric Nesbitt murder from Ninety-six.

There are many roads in Virginia that are described to be haunted, such as Elbow Road that belongs to, both, Chesapeake and Virginia Beach. Coastal Artillery Road of Fort Story in Virginia Beach would be another highly known one. The haunting on Coastal Artillery Road is of an unidentified figure seen on the road, by guards, that somehow vanishes away. A story had been passed about a guard who committed suicide while stationed there. The haunting of Elbow Road is about a jogger who died after being hit by a vehicle making a fast turn; the jogger is spiritually seen jogging at times and vanishes away.

Neither of these roads can combinedly be compared to the horrors of Crawford Road, although they’re not, they still hold a sad story with each needing to be discussed more frequently. “Are these spirits trapped or trying to send a message?” That very question, I ask myself at times.

Rewinding this back a little, this would be more to the story of Eric Nesbitt. He was twenty-one years old at the time and stationed at the “Langley” Air Force Base. Around midnight of August Sixteenth, he was leaving a 7-Eleven on Armistead Avenue of Hampton, shortly, before the robbery and abduction occurred. Twenty dollars were taken out of his wallet, but he was, then, sent to an Automatic Teller Machine—where he was forced to withdraw two hundred dollars. Eight rounds were found in his body. On a Wednesday, his Nissan pick-up truck was found.

Back in O-Seven, a resident of Newport News—named Jonathan Barron—was believed to have raped a woman and was ran over, beaten, stabbed, injected with silver thermal bromide, and set on fire by neighbors and friends. The next morning, he was found by bikers and lived after getting rushed to the hospital. I have no further details on if the rape was, in fact, true. If the claim was false, he had suffered for nothing.

The very first-known incident of the road, itself, would be the story of the bride. Although, trying to gather information as a proven fact is impossible for me to find due to it dating far into the past. The reasoning of why she had hung herself is beyond my knowledge. Neither can I find it as a proven fact of the hanging by the Ku Klux Klan, but by many, it has been said that several African Americans have been hung.

A couple more horrible incidents in the earlier years are discussed to be of a Taxi driver getting murdered in the Fifties and a housefire along the road, causing death to the children trapped inside, during the Sixties. As you can see, this is nothing but a road with a long list of complete horrible history. Could it be cursed?

A movie was made a couple years ago about this road, with the title holding the exact name of the road. The co-producer getting cited by Federal Officials would be the only rough end of it. Crawford Road is considered federal property. Even with the road being a ghostly route to travel through, there are now regular patrols by the police because of the many incidents that occur and due to people out there, at times, spray-painting the “Tour Road” bridge.


Submitted: August 03, 2020

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