In 1970, a student named Donna got a "Raggedy Ann" doll for her birthday, sent from her mother.
Shortly afterwards Donna and Angie (Her roommate) began to notice the doll switching positions and move around the apartment on its own.
Annabelle (The doll) could write too. Donna and Angie found messages written in a child's handwriting on parchment papers. The messages said: "Help Us," and "Help Lou." But what was written on the paper isn't as important as to where the paper came from. At the time, Donna didn't keep parchment in the apartment... Where did it come from?
Donna had once come home from work to find the doll on her bed. (At the time, this was typical of the doll and Donna had expected it.) But something seemed off about it. And when she picked it up, she saw what looked like blood on its chest and on the back of its hands.
Panicking, Donna and Angie contacted a medium. (They didn't know where else to turn at the time) Donna was introduced to the spirit of Annabelle Higgins, a young girl, who's seven-year-old body was found on the plain the apartment now rests on.
Annabelle Higgins told the medium that she found comfort with Donna and Angie, and wanted to stay with them inside the doll. Feeling sympathy for the spirit, Donna invited it to stay with them in the doll.
They soon found out however, their precious Annabelle, was not what she appeared to be.
Lou, you may have been wondering, was friends with Donna and Angie and had been ever since "Annabelle" arrived. He was never very fond of the doll. And on several occasions, warned Donna to get rid of it, but her emotional ties to the doll had lead her to ignore him.
"Lou awoke one night from a deep sleep and in panic. Once again he had a reoccurring bad dream. Only this time somehow, something seemed different. It was as though he was awake but couldn't move. He looked around the room but couldn't discern anything out of the ordinary and then it happened. Looking down toward his feet he saw the doll, Annabelle. It began to slowly glide up his leg, moved over his chest and then stopped. Within seconds the doll was strangling him. Paralyzed and gasping for breath Lou, at the point of asphyxiation, blacked out. Lou awoke the next morning, certain it wasn't a dream, Lou was determined to rid himself of that doll and the spirit that possessed it. Lou, however, would have one more terrifying experience with Annabelle." -http://www.warrens.net/Annabelle.html
The next day, Lou and Angie were reading over maps alone in her apartment. (They were preparing for a road trip.) When they heard rustling from Donna's room. In fear of someone had broken into the apartment, Lou went to go investigate. With no signs of forced entry, the only thing out of place was the Annabelle Doll. Who was lazily tossed in the corner. As Lou got closer to the doll, he got the feeling someone was behind him, he turned around... And of course, no one was there. But when he turned back around, he got seven claw marks. Three vertically, and four horizontally. They were completely gone two days later.
Donna, finally believing that it was a demonic force and not a sweet ghost of a seven year old girl, after what happened to Lou she contacted a Episcopal priest named Father Hegan. Father Hegan contacted Father Cooke, who immediately called for Ed and Loraine Warren.
"Ed and Lorraine Warren immediately took interest in the case and contacted Donna concerning the doll. The Warrens, after speaking with Donna, Angie, and Lou came to the immediate conclusion that the doll itself was not in fact possessed but manipulated by an inhuman presence. Spirits do not possess inanimate objects like houses or toys, they posses people. An inhuman spirit can attach itself to a place or object and this is what occurred in the Annabelle case. This spirit manipulated the doll and created the illusion of it being alive in order to get recognition. Truly, the spirit was not looking to stay attached to the doll, it was looking to posses a human host.
The spirit or in this case an inhuman demonic spirit, was essentially in the infestation stage of the phenomenon. It first began moving the doll around the apartment by means of teleportation to arouse the occupant's curiosity in hopes that they would give it recognition. Then predictably the mistake of bringing a medium into the apartment to communicate with it. The inhuman spirit now able to communicate through the medium, preyed on the girl's emotional vulnerabilities by pretending to be a rather harmless, lost young girl with which during the seance, was allowed permission from Donna to haunt the apartment. Insofar as demonic is a negative spirit, it then set about causing patently negative phenomena to occur; it aroused fear through the weird movements of that doll, it brought about the materialization of disturbing handwritten notes, the symbolic drops of blood on the doll, and ultimately it even attacked Lou leaving behind the symbolic mark of the beast. The next stage of the infestation phenomenon would have been complete human possession. Had these experiences lasted another two or three more weeks the spirit would have completely possessed, if not harmed or killed one or all of the occupants in the house."
The Warrens felt that it was necessary to have an exorcism blessing done on the apartment to cleanse it and its occupants. "The Episcopal blessing of the home is a wordy, seven page document that is distinctly positive in nature. Rather than specifically expelling evil entities from the dwelling, the emphasis is instead directed toward filling the home with the power of the positive and of God." (Ed Warren)
Father Cooke although uncomfortable with his role as an exorcist agreed to perform the seven page rite of exorcism a doctrine he recited throughout the apartment at which point the Warrens were confident the entity would no longer reside there. They agreed to take the rag doll back home with them. Upon leaving Ed placed the doll in the back seat and agreed he would not take the interstate in the event the inhuman spirit still resided with the doll.
His suspicions were all to correct in no time the Warrens felt themselves as a the object of a vicious hatred. Then at each dangerous curve the car swerved and stalled with every corner causing the power steering and brakes to fail. Repeatedly the car verged on collision. Ed reached into the back seat into his black bag and took out a vial of holy water and doused the doll making the sign of the cross over it. The disturbances stopped immediately and the Warren's arrived safely home.
After the Warrens arrived home, Ed sat the doll in a chair next to his desk. The doll levitated a number of times in the beginning, then it seemed to fall inert. During the ensuing weeks, however, it began showing up in various rooms of the house. When the Warrens were away and had the doll locked up in the outer office building, they would often return to find it sitting comfortably upstairs in Ed’s easy chair when they opened the main front door. The doll also showed a hatred for clergymen who came to the house.
In one instance Father Jason Bradford, a catholic exorcist, came to the house. Upon seeing the doll seated in the chair he picked it up and said, "You're just a rag doll Annabelle, you can't hurt anyone," and tossed the doll back in the chair at which point Ed exclaimed, "That's one thing you better not say." Upon leaving an hour later Lorraine pleaded to the priest to please be careful driving and to call her when he arrived home. Lorraine discerned tragedy for this young priest but he had to go his way. A few hours later Father Jason called Lorraine and explained that his brakes had failed as he entered a busy intersection. He was a involved in a near fatal accident destroying his vehicle. This was just one of many such events that occurred over the next few years.
The Warrens had a special case built for Annabelle inside the Occult Museum, where she resides to this day. Since the case was built Annabelle no longer appeared to move but she is thought to be responsible for the death of a young man who came to the museum on motorcycle with his girlfriend. The young man after hearing Ed's account of the doll, defiantly went up and began to bang on the case insisting that if the doll can put scratches on people then he wanted to also be scratched, Ed said to the young man, "Son you need to leave," and put him out of the building.
On the way home the young man and his girlfriend were laughing and making fun of the doll when he lost control of his motorcycle and went head on into a tree, the young man was killed instantly but his girlfriend survived and was hospitalized for over a year. When asked what happened the young woman explained that they were laughing about the doll when they lost control of the motorcycle. Ed warns you, "Do not challenge."