“On May 1, 2023, at approximately 12:29 AM, LVMPD dispatch received a call about a suspicious situation.” That’s how the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department described the events of an early morning 911 call in an email statement sent to news outlets. For the people directly involved in the incident, however, things were not so nonchalant.
“I swear to God this is not a joke,” the caller told the operator a little before officers arrived on the scene, “this is actually—we’re terrified.” As the caller would later tell responding officers, he and his family saw “a big something with light” fall out of the sky and into their backyard. It was followed almost immediately by something even more unsettling.
Was there a UFO in Las Vegas?
“They’re like 8 foot, 9 foot, 10 foot. They look like aliens to us. Big eyes. They have big eyes. Like, I can’t explain it, and big mouth,” the caller told the 911 dispatcher. “Not human. They’re 100% not human.” According to later reports, the creatures continued to observe the caller and his family, even after they went into the house. “There’s like an 8-foot person beside it, and another’s inside, and it has big eyes and it’s looking at us– and it’s still there.”
“It was like a big creature,” one witness told the responding officers. Even the police found themselves shaken up by the unexpected call. This was partly because, earlier in the night, officers themselves had spotted a glowing object seemingly falling from the sky—an incident that was captured on bodycam footage. “Everybody saw a shooting star, now these people say there’s aliens in their backyard,” one of the officers was recorded saying on the way to the call. “I’m so nervous right now. I have butterflies, bro.”
By the time officers arrived on the scene, however, any evidence that might have been there was already long gone, according to authorities, who “closed the event as unfounded.” However, in the bodycam footage obtained from the officer who conducted the initial investigation, it’s clear that the event is being taken seriously, as he interviews passing motorists to see if they spotted anything in the sky.
“If those 9-foot beings come back, don’t call us, alright,” the officer says to the caller near the end of the investigation, his voice indicating that he is joking but also maybe not. “I ain’t dealing with that.”
UFOs, ETs, and Alien Abductions
Is the alien footage real?
That might have been the end of it, but we live in an internet age, and anything as evocative as the 911 call and bodycam footage that came out of that Las Vegas sighting is bound to have a lifespan online. In this case, footage began to leak onto the internet that purported to show the creatures themselves.
One tweet, from the account @CBKNEWS121, shows what looks to be night vision footage of a hunched, humanoid creature with long fingers and a nearly featureless face. “Watch!” exhorts the tweet, which got more than 10,000 likes. “Actual #Alien Footage from the Las #Vegas #UFO Landing!”
According to Reuters, the video is one of several circulating that combines audio from the 911 call and news reports about the incident with CGI-created imagery to produce fake footage that supposedly shows the aliens that the callers claim to have seen. Reporting from Reuters linked the initial video of the creature (sans the 911 call audio) with a visual effects TikToker called @owltreestump, who shared the video on June 9 with the caption, “Smh knew I shouldn’t investigate noises outside,” along with a string of hashtags including #cryptid, #creepy, and #blender3d, a software program used in 3D animation.
UFOs Caught on Film
The impact of David Grusch's alien allegations
While UFO sightings have been a major part of American popular culture since World War II, the report from Las Vegas comes amid a recent uptick in interest in unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs), the official term for what most people still call UFOs. This interest can be traced to a number of declassified documents and videos released by the Pentagon in recent months, as well as four unidentified craft shot down by Air Force planes in February of 2023.
However, perhaps nothing has so reignited our mania for all things extraterrestrial than the stories of David Grusch, a former intelligence officer for the United States Air Force turned whistleblower, who asserts that the United States government has maintained a secret program for decades recovering “intact and partially-intact non-human aircraft,” not to mention “dead pilots.” He also claims that this information is being withheld from Congress.
Following a 2022 whistleblower complaint filed with the U.S. Office of the Intelligence Community Inspector General, Grusch went public with his claims in June of 2023. Among the postulations laid out in his statements is the claim that Mussolini’s fascist Italian government recovered a “non-human” spacecraft during World War II, and that the Vatican later helped the United States government to acquire said craft. Grusch also asserts that he has spoken with intelligence officials who had been briefed on “football-field” sized spacecrafts, as well as “malevolent activity” by extraterrestrials, to name just a few of Grusch’s outlandish statements.
The CIA UFO Papers
Though Grusch’s assertions seem downright fanciful, echoing the sorts of bombastic claims made by crackpot conspiracy theorists for decades, his position as a former intelligence official lends him an air of credibility that he might otherwise lack, and he apparently has the attention of at least a few members of Congress, who have stated that the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability will hold a congressional hearing on UFOs at some point in the near future.
What does all this mean for the family that claims to have seen inhuman creatures some 8 or 10 feet tall in their backyard in Las Vegas? Perhaps nothing, except to say that they are far from alone in reporting strange sights in the sky and odd intruders into their lives. For now, if the creatures they saw were real, they appear to have vanished. But if Grusch is telling even a fraction of the truth, they’ll probably be back…
UFOs and the National Security State
Featured image: Bruce Warrington/Unsplash