In 1995, the people of Puerto Rico began reporting encounters with a strange, vampire-like creature. The creature in question, which was dubbed the "chupacabras," was said to be about four feet tall, with a line of spines down its back. Reports of vampire-like monsters in Puerto Rico actually go back to the 1970s with the "Moca Vampire," but today we'll be focusing on the reports from the '90s, and a certain movie from the same time.
EYEWITNESS DESCRIPTIONS OF THE CHUPACABRAS
To start off this post, we'll look at what the chupacabras is said to look like.
The first person to see the unknown vampire was Madelyne Tolentino. When she was helping her mother move in August of 1995, she happened to look out the window and saw a frightened man sitting in a car. She went outside to see what was going on.
When she went outside, Tolentino spotted something. It was walking on two legs, but wasn't human.
The thing Tolentino was looking at was about four feet tall, and had eyes with no pupils, which Tolentino said were "constantly moving from side to side." The creature was holding its arms and legs in "an attack position, as though it were a TV monster." On each hand, the creature had three fingers with claws. The legs were "long and skinny," and the creature was covered in short hair and had marks all over it, which Tolentino said looked like burns. It had a row of "feathers" down its back and walked with "robot-like movements, as if it was being controlled by someone."
When the chupacabras looked Tolentino in the eyes, she screamed, which caused her mother to run outside. The creature started running, and disappeared into the woods. A boy, who worked for Tolentino's husband, was also there, and he, along with her mother, ran after the creature. He got close to it and tried to grab it, but when he did, the "feathers" on its back, which he described as "spines," whipped up and started changing color. Another neighbor saw what was happening, and when Tolentino's mother yelled "catch it," the thing took off again, but this time "seemed to be flying as if it had been suspended in the air."
Tolentino's description of the creature is very weird. But, did she really see what she said she saw?
During the same year that the first animals began appearing dead and drained of blood, and when reports of chupacabras first began to surface, the movie Species hit theaters, which features an alien-human hybrid creature that looks decidedly similar to the description of the Puerto Rican monster. The exact date the movie was released was July 7, one month before Tolentino's report of a chupacabras.
Skeptic Ben Radford asked Tolentino if she had seen the movie before she had her encounter with a chupacabras. Indeed, she had. Radford said to livescience.com that he feels that there is a correlation between Species being released and the eyewitness descriptions from Puerto Rico of a creature that looked like the one in the movie. He thinks that the reports of chupacabras all over Latin America after Tolentino's are only the result of her "Hollywood-inspired monster."
While it is possible that Tolentino and others created a vampire monster after seeing Species, it does not explain the dead animals found all over Puerto Rico during 1995 and 1996. It also does not explain reports of the Moca Vampire 20 years earlier.
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