'Ghost Hunters' Star Mustafa Gatollari Breaks Down Grant Wilson's Poltergeist Theory (Exclusive)

On Wednesday’s episode of Ghost Hunters, the team led by Grant Wilson, investigated the claims of a woman in Hanover, Pennsylvania experiencing harassment and physical torment by an unexplained force in her once, regarded dream home — an event that paranormal investigator, Mustafa Gatollari exclusively goes into detail about to PopCulture.com following the case’s wrap.

In the first half of the episode titled, “Return to St. Augustine,” DeAnna Simpson shared with Kristen Luman and Wilson some of the paranormal activity she had experienced, which included extreme cases of headaches, nausea, scratches, a black mist coming through the walls, the sounds of hissing, a woman weeping, and even being thrown down the stairs, which caused serious injury.

With the intent to help her get answers as to why she experienced such activity, Grant and his team test for environmental conditions and other things that “could give false positives.” During the investigation, the team head to the basement and test for carbon monoxide or electrical leaks. With the aid of their EMF detectors to sense electrically charged objects that could influence surroundings, Luman reveals the device is “not spiking at all.”

The team then gathers their findings and conclude there is no carbon monoxide or electrical leakage in the home, unsatisfying Wilson: “Dang... I was expecting to find that, because that would explain the headaches, the black shadows and things like that. Well, it is what it is, guys.”

The team further investigates by splitting into three. While in the attic, Brandon Alvis and Gatollari investigate Simpson’s shared claims of something pushing her down the stairs, but discover after the team’s own cameraman slips, it can be debunked that with steep stairs, a sloped ceiling and a slippery carpet that brings in a very disoriented feeling, all these elements can cause someone to accidentally take a nasty fall down the stairs.

Three hours later, the team in their respective spots are not coming across any activity with Luman admitting it just feels “like an empty house.” With nothing occurring, Wilson admits the one thing that might be missing when it comes to the home is Simpson’s presence, prompting him to bring her back.

With the teams now switched up in the home and armed with EMF detectors, Richel Stratton and Brian Murray are now in the attic, while Alvis and Gatollari are in the basement.

“Everything I’ve heard and experienced here keeps making me think that DeAnna might be the cause of the activity,” Wilson says. “It’s called a poltergeist. Poltergeist is a style of haunting where the activity is caused by someone who’s still alive in theory. For example if DeAnna is experiencing a lot of anxiety and stress, she may be — unknowing to her — causing some paranormal activity. So, if we introduce DeAnna into the house, we might see some of activity. If we do, this could support this theory that she’s the cause of it.”

Once Simpson enters the home with Wilson, the team begins to sense paranormal activity, starting with Stratton, who feels a chill, while Alvis has a “really weird feeling” in his head. Stratton soon shares with Murray that it feels as if her head is being “squeezed.”

In both the attic and basement where the team is placed, tech cameras capture the EMF detectors spiking.

“It feels really heavy in here,” Alvis says to Gatollari, who later admits he’s also feeling the same thing and as if a presence does not want him to go “any further” and is “pushing” him out.

After Wilson takes Simpson out of the house, the team discovers the activity has completely stopped, with Gatollari telling Alvis the feeling is gone, while Stratton no longer senses any further pressure.

“Having investigated the paranormal field for over 30 years, I started noticing the trend of what we call, poltergeists,” Wilson says off-camera. “So I put this to the test. When we first brought the team to the house, there was very little activity. I bring DeAnna in, it increases. Then we leave and it just goes flat.”

While outside with the team, Wilson concludes they “hit the nail on the head” with this case: “She is a catalyst here. We tested the theory of this possibly being poltergeist and it went textbook. You gotta love it, man, when you have a theory, you test it, it works. Especially when it’s paranormal.”

After their analysis, the team reveals to Simpson and her husband that upon their investigation, they learned it was a poltergeist — emphasizing how it’s nothing like its depiction in film or television.

“The definition for us of a poltergeist is any paranormal activity that’s caused by someone who’s still alive,” Wilson says. “It happens around one person, it doesn’t make much sense — the activity — and it’s heightened when the person is stressed or anxious.”

Wilson adds poltergeists are not an “entity,” but rather a word used to describe activity by someone who’s still alive.

“Good news is there’s comfort in that, as odd as it sounds because you’re in control of it,” he says. “It’s a manifestation of your inner dialogue, of your inner situation, if you’re upset, it’s gonna push out.”

Luman adds that Simpson’s case involved a lot of emotional stress, including Simpson and her husband each going through their own divorces and blending their families together. Wilson adds it is a trend, without any explanation, later interjecting that what’s beautiful about the situation now is she’s leaving behind “all that negativity.”

With her concerns being that the experience might occur again in the old home, co-team leader, Marston assures her there is no paranormal activity occurring. However, Wilson informs Simpson that with the new house, she might experience something. Though if she does, she could contact the team and they would walk her through it.

In an exclusive with PopCulture.com following the case, paranormal investigator and historian, Gatollari admitted that while it was a very emotional experience for Simpson to overcome, it was an absolute shocker for the team.

“I was completely surprised by what we found,” Gatollari told PopCulture.com, exclusively about the case. “Totally surprised. I think we all were.”

The New Jersey native shares throughout his career, he’s been looking to find “practical explanations” of why people experience hauntings and stresses how it involves an element of energy that could go “sour” or “make someone bitter.”


“Think about all that bitter energy you have,” he said. “You’re not going after your dreams or are in a bad relationship, and that’s just ruining your entire home dynamic, and it’s forcing you to indulge certain emotions and trains of thought that are unhealthy. And they manifest in different ways. But what occurred, I felt that there was some of that [element] going into here.”

Ghost Hunters airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on A&E.