Geolocating a walkthrough of a phony kidnapper’s house

In this video, Carter Banks (BigBankz) makes up another tall tale while he walks through mostly worthless leftovers of a deceased, elderly lady:

I found it! This one was harder.

First, I checked the story line, that some kidnapped girl was chained up in the basement of a house in Georgia. Such a story would be explosive, well covered. No story can be found!

Wait a second, why Georgia? Several of Carter’s videos are from Georgia, and he said it’s in the “deep south”. Also, some materials in the house suggest Atlanta area.

My first clue was this bread bag:

It identifies Publix Bakery 615. Store 615 is in Suwanee (map). While not terribly far from the house, it ended up being a red herring. There are several closer Publix stores. All it did is provide a hint that the house may be in the greater Atlanta area.

The clue most helpful to narrow down the location is this:

I could see a 680 that may be the end of a ZIP code and a 90 that may end a phone number. The top appears to be a name that ends in “ng’s” and of a company that is a “cleaners & alterations”. A little searching turned up Young’s Cleaning & Alterations in Winder, GA. The phone number and ZIP code match!

Now I needed to seek additional clues. This aerial shot helped the most:

I put arrows on interesting features. The top row of arrows shows buildings near the house. The second arrow in that row is the house. The bottom-right arrow, which points to the right, shows a power line. That, plus the face of white house and its driveway, led me to believe that a road is just outside the foreground.

If you zoom in on the white patterns on top right, you see this:

Not too far in the background is a small development.

Altogether, this suggests that the house may be in an area that’s not that rural.

Two more super important clues:

  • Two pictures back, look at the shadows. That view is likely from the evening, so the sun is likely mostly to the west. The house therefore faces east.
  • In outdoor scenes, you can hear constant drone of a freeway. Because the freeway does not appear in the above shot, the home is likely not far south of a major freeway.

Now I can fan out from Winder, GA, looking just south of major freeways for homes that fit the pattern.

As I was browsing, I saw a house with an interesting driveway. I compared it to the screenshot, then looked to its right, and there it is:

Piecing together its history is trickier than usual. What I found is it used to be the residence of Eloise H. Graham. She likely died before May 2018 as that is when her property was transferred to Ebenezer Baptist Church, likely as a bequest. Some information suggests a Robert Graham lived there previously and that he died in 2000 at around 80 years old. Given what it is in the house and the garage, Eloise probably survived Robert and lived there with others.

Given the weeds that showed in the driveway by June 2019, I think the house became vacant under church ownership:

The church sold it to one investor in March 2020, then that investor sold to another investor in April 2022.

On the “middle of nowhere” claim: False! It’s in the middle of a fairly developed area.

On Carter’s story of a chained-up, kidnapped girl in the basement: not only is there no media coverage of this incredible allegation, several video commenters mentioned that they did not see any place where someone could be chained up. That’s because there was no kidnapping! It is likely that all we’re looking at is a walkthrough of unwanted debris left behind after Eloise passed and her family vacated the home in 2018.

Geolocating a mansion that’s not owned by a mafia boss and isn’t worth $8.8 million

In this video, Carter Banks (Bigbankz) tours a large home and its property:

I was able to locate it through the story line.

Carter shared a story of a plumber who was accused of murdering someone with two bullets through his head and stuffing him in the trunk in 1998. Well, guess what? A 2003 New York Post article reveals a murder matching this circumstance really happened, and the suspect was Alex Figliolia, Jr. A later NYP article that same year links Alex, Jr. with Alex, Sr. in overcharging MTA by around $10 million. The second NYP article mentions that Alex, Sr. has a 9,500 square foot Holmdel mansion. Both NYP articles allege both Figliolias have mafia connections.

While Alex, Jr. was never charged with the murder, the New York Times later reported that Alex, Jr. and his dad and mom later pled guilty to crimes related to theft from the MTA.

Carter also shared that a recent tax evasion arrest was part of the narrative. Well, guess what? Alex, Jr. was arrested and indicted on tax evasion in December 2023.

Through minimal searching, I located Alex, Sr.’s Holmdel home:

A match!

The property record (search on 105 Middletown in the Holmdel township) indicates Alex, Sr. and his wife have owned the place since 2000. It also indicates foreclosure proceedings started in 2016 and again in 2023. Zillow shows it to be in pre-foreclosure status. Realtor.com has impressive, 2019 photos of an apparent real-estate listing.

Carter again appears to be weaving a false narrative to sell a walk-through of an empty home. Keep in mind that Alex, Sr. is the homeowner, and Carter did not make a case that Alex, Jr., who was 50 as of his December 2023 indictment, resides in this house. Let’s review:

  • Alleged murder: FALSE. The murder allegation detailed in the New York Post was associated with Alex, Jr.
  • Previous owner was arrested on tax evasion charge: FALSE. The current owner has owned the property since 2000. It is the owner’s son who arrested on the tax-evasion charge.
  • The house will be torn down: UNLIKELY. Carter gave no clear reason why the house would be torn down. It appears to be in pre-foreclosure and still owned by Alex, Sr. It’s unlikely that a drastic change like this would be allowed given a pending foreclosure. I suspect we’re seeing a paused renovation with the minimum necessary upkeep to minimize property degradation. It is for sure not abandoned as the power is still on. The presence of a dumpster in the driveway is curious, and I am not sure what it speaks to my theory.
  • Mafia boss: FALSE. The deepest mob connection is where the New York Times alleged a vague connection. That is light years from “mafia boss”.
  • $8.8 million value: FALSE. This is a tremendous exaggeration. Monmouth County pegs the property’s value at $3.6 million. Realtor.com says $3.3 million. Zillow says $3.4 million. All are less than half of Carter’s alleged value.

Geolocating a “$5.5 Million MEGA Mansion”

In this video, Carter Banks walks through two condos:

Yup, I found it.

This one was harder. Carter said it’s in the south, but the main clue is at around 33:21:

“MORE THAN PINK” corresponds to the Komen Foundation’s MORE THAN PINK Walk. As this video was posted in early 2024, I assume it was taken in late 2023. Reviewing 2023 event locations, the only one that is really “in the south” is Atlanta, Georgia.

Careful analysis of the drone shots and other clues in the video suggest this is a large home in an older neighborhood. Why older? The addition of condos in the back, which are nowhere near as old as the house, generally can only happen in older neighborhoods with looser zoning or deed restrictions.

Additional clues on its location:

  • Loud road noise place it near a major highway.
  • Various videos indicate it faces a well trafficked, two-lane road.
  • The road has a crosswalk.
  • The left side of the house (from the perspective of standing in its front yard) is one or two lots away from another two-lane road (we’ll call that road 2), and that other road has less traffic.
  • The house to the left has a white roof and a narrow pool.
  • Behind the house is a small cul-de-sac that intersects with road 2.
  • The house faces to the east. That was apparent by the shadows. The exterior videos all felt like mid-day, so the sun was likely mostly to the south. Since the shadows fell off the north side of the building, that means it faces to the east.

This gave me a distinct fingerprint to look for.

Atlanta is big. It took a while. I initially focused east and then north of downtown. I later branched out on the northeast side and found it:

Now for commentary on Carter’s truthiness. He has a bad habit of using tall tales to sell his videos. He didn’t punch much higher this time.

First, important background: the main house—the “mansion”–is one of six condos on this property. The other five are in the horseshoe. Carter first entered condo #1 (property record), then he entered condo #6, the “mansion” (property record).

Condos 1-4 and 6 are owned by three people who share a last name. It wouldn’t surprise me if they are related. Those condos are all unoccupied, and the current owner of condo 1 used to also own condos 2 and 6 but sold those two to their current, same-last-name owner. Condos 1-4 and 6 all had sales transactions within the past 20 years.

Condo 5, which Carter claimed is occupied, has had the same owner since 1987, way before the current, last-name-sharing owners snapped up condos 1-4 and 6. The name is different. I see no connection.

Carter conveyed accurate information on the home’s age. The property record shows it was built in 1920.

Carter’s $5.5 million mansion value is unlikely to be true. The main house–condo 6–is tax-appraised at $2.1 million. $5.5 million exaggerates its value by almost two thirds! Even if you add up the tax-appraised value of all six condos, you end up at only $3,997,100.

Is this a “MEGA mansion”? No way. At 6,784 square feet, this is at best a small mansion, maybe more accurately just a large house.

Carter said that the prior owner died in 2005, the wife could not keep up with the mortgage, and left it abandoned during a major renovation.

None of that is likely true.

In 2005, the mansion (condo 6) was owned by Diana Fiksman. She survived her husband Alex who, per his August 2000 obituary, was “owner operator of Alex Hairstyles in Atlanta for over 30 years”. (Diana passed in 2020.)

Per the record of a lawsuit that rose to the Georgia Supreme Court, the Fiksmans were associated with that property no later than 1993. Their start could have been earlier. While I am not a lawyer, my read of the lawsuit suggest that Diana was in a position of strength on the property, not someone in dire straits.

Diana sold the house (condo 6) in 2006 to the same person who later purchased condo 1 in 2015. I’m going to bet that owner resided in the house until he sold it in 2018 to a person with his same last name.

I doubt the current owner resided there. I think he bought it to renovate. Based on the condition of the interior, I think the renovation work is fairly recent. Also, in May 2017, trash cans were stored by the street:

They were gone by December 2018, after the sale:

Removing those cans from the driveway would make sense if you no longer reside there. And why would you not reside there? Because you’re renovating it.

Also, isn’t this a fairly recent Chipotle cup in part of the fountain?

Carter also suggested that the prior resident of the mansion (condo 6) was of a specific ethnicity, collected art, and ran a business out of the home. The last names of the owners of condos 1-4 and 6 do correspond to a particular ethnicity. But the art collection and business-running are unclear.

Likely, all we got from this is walkthrough of a paused, recent renovation on a large home, accompanied by some buildings out back in varying states of repair. The intrigue concocted through a back story appears to, once again, be untruthful. But that’s how you sell boring walkthroughs of commodity structures.

Geocoding a “10 people lived in” house

Carter Banks (Bigbankz) recently did a walkthrough of this house, where he claims 10 people lived:

This one was super easy to find.

First, at 0:05, we see that it’s on a maintained road, likely a state highway, with a power clearance next to it, and in the distance a gradual curve:

Next, at 5:05, he drops a huge clue, narrowing down to somewhere by Jeffersonville, Georgia (incidentally, just down from Gordon, where he staged a walkthrough of a phony satanic mansion and more that I haven’t posted yet):

It took little time to locate it:

The house is owned by the estate of Laura Hollingsworth. Her obituary indicates she died in 2001.

Going back in Google Street View historical images, the last clear sign of occupation was 2016, when a truck was in the driveway:

Beyond that, I don’t see a strong case for that ten people lived in this 2460 square foot house. Or if they did, it was likely several decades ago, when Laura’s seven kids were growing up. Her kids are now elderly, so that would have been a very long time ago.

It is most likely that one of Laura’s daughters lived there. Her daughter likely moved out voluntarily, simply leaving behind a 100 year old house that has too much deferred maintenance. This is not uncommon in rural areas with low property values. She left behind things she did not value. Sure, the house has a lot of beds, but they are likely meant for occasional visits, not continual occupation.

This does not appear to be a story of a mysteriously interrupted life. The people moved on and are living their own lives. This is just “stuff” they no longer value. And how do you dress up a walk through of mere stuff? With a phony back story.

Geolocating a phony doomsday-prepper mansion

In this video, Carter Banks walks through an abandoned house:

As usual, Carter fabricates an insane backstory so that he can sell a walkthrough of a dilapidated house that likely only contains things the owners no longer wanted.

I spent too much time on this one.

At 2:50, you can see 275 house address on a mailbox:

I had to look at a few frames to settle on 275. The middle number almost looked like a 9.

At 15:04 is a sticky note with a phone number:

749-9300 and a reference to a heating company. That turns up Midland Air, in Lexington, SC, a suburb of Columbia, SC.

Then at 24:03 is this Greater Columbia phone book:

That is another sign I am on the right track. Remember, the heating company is near Lexington, SC.

Now where? I recall photos of Great Value merchandise, such as this oatmeal box at 7:04:

That suggests proximity to Walmart. That didn’t narrow it down much.

Another nice clue, at 37:29, is a newspaper mailbox that has “The State” on the side:

The State is Columbia’s newspaper.

So far, a lot of time spent finding clues that merely point to the Columbia region. The HVAC company suggests the west side since Lexington is a western suburb. Then I have a house with a 275 address that is not too far from a Walmart.

I need better clues.

Back to the start. Aha, found a clue at 3:35:

The house’s location is indicated with the arrow. In the background are high-tension power lines! Beyond them is what appears to be a blue apartment building. Major clue!

Also, 3:42 shows a flat, white roof an odd pattern on right:

I traced the major power-line corridors to look for this aerial pattern. In less than five minutes I found it!

The property is at 275 Weed Lane, Columba, SC, built by Lowell Hayes.

The facts in Lowell’s 2020 obituary–not 2015 as per Carter’s story–and the 2022 obituary of his wife, Martha, suggest that the doomsday-prepper backstory is entirely fake.

Lowell’s obituary provides ordinary explanations for what Carter saw. Lowell was an unconventional tinkerer and serial small-businessman. That explains a good deal of the home’s oddities, such as the basement filled with parts and tools. The obituary also reveals he was quite involved in a fundamentalist Christian church. Part of fundamentalism is a clownish obsession with end-times superstitions. That explains the weird prophetic videos and materials that Carter flipped through.

While the organ didn’t play into Carter’s phony story, it is interesting. Lowell’s obituary says he installed it for his wife, Martha. A 1982 University of Montevallo publication confirms Martha was organist at the same church mentioned in Lowell’s obituary.

The property was listed for sale in 2020 but removed from the market in 2021.

Once again, phony intrigue is used to sell a boring walkthrough of left-behind debris in a rotting house.