Back in July, Netflix quietly released the documentary Extraordinary: The Stan Romanek Story, about a UFO enthusiast who claims to have been the subject of alien contact and abduction for over 15 years. The film features the testimony of Romanek himself, who believes that he has even fathered several human-alien hybrid children, as well as his wife Lisa, another woman claiming to be the mother of his alleged alien babies, and several friends and professionals who corroborate his claims.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending how you want to look at it), the documentary also features LOL-inducing evidence Romanek has collected over the years, such as drawings of big-breasted alien women, photos and video of supposed extraterrestrials peeking their heads in windows, around corners, and in the background of photos, recorded blips of light, mysterious-sounding phone recordings, and poorly made crop circles.
It would be a moderately entertaining, yet ultimately forgettable watch, if not for the film’s epilogue which states that on February 13, 2014 (shortly after the documentary was produced in November of 2013), Romanek was arrested on child pornography charges, which he vehemently denies, claiming to be a victim of a nefarious government cover-up. Likewise, several times throughout the film Romanek alleges that he believes government agencies have been trying to silence him throughout the years, attempting to intervene and remove evidence of his alien visitors. (In one instance, he claims agents posing as contractors came and removed siding on his house that had been damaged in an encounter.)
Romanek’s criminal trial finally started this week, after several delays, which helps explain the timing of Netflix releasing the documentary as interest has once again been revived in the case. The UFO enthusiast is being charged with felony allegations of possessing and distributing child pornography, after hundreds of images and videos recovered from devices seized during a 2013 search of his Loveland, Colorado home were found depicting children posing nude or engaged in sex acts.
The case is unusual in that Romanek’s credibility as a UFO expert and abductee is as much on the line as his innocence (or lack thereof), as the entire crux of his defense rests on whether or not he was, indeed, framed by a covert government agency. But complicating matters is that Romanek himself has at times undermined his own credibility, admitting in a 2015 radio interview to faking moving objects in his own videos (which he later apparently claimed he had done so due to intimidation by authorities).
Adding another layer to an already bizarre case is that the lead detective investigating Romanek, Brian Koopman — who initially received a 2013 tip about Romanek from the Department of Homeland Security (which had first investigated Romanek back in 2008 when an agent found images traced to Romanek’s IP address via a a file-sharing network) — has had his judgement called into question on several occasions. Koopman was sued in a civil trial by another former Loveland police officer, Tammy Fisher, after accusing her of tipping off the Romaneks and interfering with the investigation, resulting in the couple allegedly wiping a hard drive containing evidence.
Fisher had apparently become friends with the couple over the course of an unrelated investigation before she left the police force in 2012, and Koopman had unsuccessfully applied for a warrant to search her phone records. Her case was later dismissed by a district court. On the stand Thursday, Fisher told the jury of Koopman, “I have reached an opinion that he’s a liar, he’s dishonest. […] He lied in this case and tried to charge me with a crime.” Her statements were later struck from evidence by the judge after an objection from the prosecution.
The eight-day trial is expected to wrap next week, and will likely only get more bizarre as it continues to play out, given that following his 2014 arrest, Romanek’s wife Lisa — who ardently stands by her husband — promised that they would be “taking UFOlogy into the courtroom.”
You can watch the trailer for Extraordinary: The Stan Romanek Story below.