Arne Cheyenne Johnson says he was possessed by the devil when he killed his girlfriend's boss in 1981.
The story is at the center of the Netflix documentary "The Devil on Trial."
Here's what we know about where the key players in the story are today.
In February 1981, Arne Cheyenne Johnson fatally stabbed his then-girlfriend's boss, Alan Bono. As seen on Netflix's new documentary "The Devil on Trial," he doesn't dispute the fact that his hands did the stabbing. But he and members of his wife Debbie Glatzel's family say his soul was taken over by the devil when he did it.
"The Devil on Trial" shares the Glatzel family's story — one which is both the focus of the documentary and the inspiration for a film in "The Conjuring" horror franchise. According to the Glatzels, the family first encountered "the devil" while living in Brookfield, Connecticut, when Debbie's then-11-year-old brother, David Glatzel became possessed. The Glatzels sought the help of paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, and during David's 1980 exorcism, the evil spirit jumped from David's body into Johnson's, he claimed.
"I yelled at this thing to the top of my lungs. I said, 'Leave this little kid alone. Take me on. I'm here. Take me on.' I felt this coldness come over me, ice cold. Lorraine said, 'Oh my God, what did you do?'" Johnson recalls in the documentary.
In February 1981, around five months after the exorcism, Johnson stabbed Alan Bono to death during an altercation outside Bono's home.
Johnson claimed that he was innocent and that a demon had possessed him at the time of the crime. However, the judge in the case ordered that details of Johnson's alleged demonic possession couldn't be used in court.
Johnson was convicted of manslaughter in November 1981 and served five years of a 10-to-20-year sentence for his crime, but was released early for being an "exemplary inmate," Connecticut's chief of parole for the state corrections department told the Associated Press at the time.
The defense's argument that the devil possessed Johnson and was responsible for his behavior was a controversial one, even among some of the Glatzel family members.
Debbie's oldest brother, Carl Glatzel, doesn't believe that a demon possessed any of his family members at all, nor does he think demonic forces are to blame for Bono's death.
In the film, Carl says that when Ed and Lorraine came to his family's home to gather proof that David was possessed, they described symptoms of possession that David might experience in front of the boy. So, the thrashing and cursing spells that David had would have been easy for him to mimic.
Per Carl's memory, his brother's behavior would cease when his father came into the room and demanded he stop. Carl said that his mother, Judy Glatzel, put the sleeping pill Sominex in her family's food, which, over time, resulted in extreme side effects.
As for the motive behind Bono's death, Carl says, "There's nothing demonic in this. Arne was very possessive of Debbie. There were speculations and rumors that Debbie was having an affair with Alan Bono."
A detective who investigated the case in the film said that Debbie told officials that she previously had a relationship with Bono, her boss at a dog-grooming business in town.
However, the Glatzels' middle child, Alan Glatzel, says he does believe the possession occurred.
Whether they believe the demon possession was real, most of the Glatzel family do believe that Ed and Lorraine Warren misled the family, telling everyone they'd be rich because they secured a deal for a book based on the story.
Family matriarch Judy Glatzel signed a contract with the Warrens for a book without receiving counsel from a lawyer. According to Carl, in the late 1980s, his parents earned $4,500 from the book deal, while the Warrens made over $81,000.
Ed and Lorraine Warren's paranormal investigations became the basis of "The Conjuring" film franchise, which began in 2013. The third film in the main series, 2021's "The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It," is based on the Glatzel family and Johnson's story.
Per Carl Glatzel, the Warren family profited from the films, but his family didn't. "The Warrens made a lot of money off of us. If they can profit off you, they will," agrees David in the documentary.
So, where are the key players from "The Devil on Trial" today? Here's everything we know about what became of Arne Johnson, David Glatzel, and Ed and Lorraine Warren.
Johnson's story was made into a TV movie, ''The Demon Murder Case,'' in 1983, starring Kevin Bacon.
Johnson's girlfriend, Debbie Glatzel, stayed with him while he served his prison sentence, and they married in 1985, a year before he was released on good behavior. The couple went on to have two children.
In the documentary, Johnson says he turned to religion in prison and is no longer possessed by the devil or any demons.
After his release, Johnson went on to work for a landscaper. Per an interview with "The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It," director Michael Chaves in Digital Spy, Debbie died of cancer in 2021.
David Glatzel is now in his early 50s. He says he's speaking out for the first time about his experience in the Netflix film.
"He's a really lovely man," Christopher Holt, the director of "The Devil on Trial," told Newsweek in 2023. "He doesn't remember as much as Alan does, because of all the blackouts, [but] he does think still to this day that he was possessed."
In 2007, David and his brother Carl sued Gerald Brittle, the author of the book "The Devil in Connecticut," and Ed and Lorraine Warren, who contributed to the book, for invasion of privacy, libel, infliction of emotional distress, and other charges related to unlawful business practices. However, their case was dismissed on lack of grounds.
Little is known about his personal life.
Ed and Lorraine Warren
The couple had a daughter, Judy Spera. At the time of Lorraine's death in 2019, she was survived by her daughter and grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and a great-great-granddaughter.
Lorraine's obituary calls her a "world-renowned paranormal researcher and ghost hunter" and names her and her family as the inspiration behind "The Conjuring" franchise.
Their grandson Christopher McKinnell appears in "The Devil on Trial" to explain how supernatural possession works from his grandparents' perspective.
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