Real Haunted Houses

Real Haunted House

Toys R US

Sunnyvale, California

This store sits atop the foundation of an old mansion. One day, a former resident cut off his hands while chopping wood; he still lurks around the premises. The spirit has been known to knock over boxes in the store late at night. Cameras were set up at one time to capture the nightly occurrences; a shadowy figure was seen walking up and down each aisle.

81 comments on this haunted house. Share your story »


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grace brown says:

September 17, 2005, 5:30 pm

I have been to your shop in sunnyvale when a cold feeling passed me.
A shallow figure I saw out of the corner of my eye and it vanished when I turned my head.

Exene says:

October 9, 2005, 5:37 pm

and now a haunted Toy’r us! listen if you realy want to stay “classy” as u put it. leave these stories out!

Alyssa says:

October 20, 2005, 3:01 am

I was just wondering how someone cuts off their hands chopping wood!!

betty says:

October 25, 2005, 1:40 pm

i’ve heard this story before but i’m not sure if it was sunnyvale toys r us.

RobertaD says:

October 28, 2005, 4:02 pm

Many years ago, there was a program that talked about this haunting and had pictures of a figure of a boy standing by a group of investigators. The PA’s said there was no little boy there when they were conduting the investigation. This was really incredible!

scottc says:

November 4, 2005, 6:01 am

here is link about toys r us.

penny says:

January 17, 2006, 12:33 pm

How on earth did he manage to chop his hands while chopping wood

Nicole Washington says:

January 24, 2006, 2:18 am

After he chopped one hand off, how the hell did he chop off the other one?

kim says:

February 4, 2006, 9:20 pm

oh yeah ha!! if yal go to youll find the same story about toy rus

josh says:

March 3, 2006, 5:06 pm

This Toys R Us has been on countless TV shows that investigate paranomal happenings. I have been in the store. I hot very strange feelings inside it in certain places.

someone says:

April 15, 2006, 7:45 pm

HA!! whatever…

Ted says:

May 24, 2006, 2:30 pm

I have had many experiences myself in and around this store. My mom used to work there in the late 80’s and I have seen a plasma like material coming down from the ceiling and my mom was actually struck by a sign while working late one evening. A week after that had happened my grandmother, mother, myself and a cousin of mine, were chased by a shadow-figure in the parking lot. It had made two passes at us until we finally lefted the parking lot and headed down El Camino Real.

kim says:

June 7, 2006, 5:55 pm

it was built over what use to be a farmland not a manson he cut his leg not his hands. and his names was johny

kat says:

June 12, 2006, 9:09 pm

i heard this storie before but never believed it until i heard it from another source

angel says:

August 9, 2006, 6:32 pm


angel says:

August 9, 2006, 6:36 pm

i am paranormal and i sense that this man cut his hand off to commit suicide because he had not wanted the manision turned into a toy store.Where do u get these stories? There seriously twisted.

angel says:

August 10, 2006, 7:32 am

if 1 hand was cutt off how was the othetr cutt off 2.

moll says:

September 20, 2006, 1:31 pm

ive heard that people have reported this guy playing with girls hair too. creepy.

maria says:

September 24, 2006, 3:34 am

i’ve heard scary stories but nothing like this!!!!
i’m this is INSANE!!!

josh says:

September 30, 2006, 8:42 pm


AJ says:

October 6, 2006, 6:44 pm

Ok, the man’s name was Johnny (or Yonny) as he was scandinavian.Johnny had brain damage from contracting Encephalitis and he bled to death in 1884. He did not cut off his hands as the article stated. He was chopping wood and cut his leg with the axe most likely hit the femoral artery. And yes, it is the Sunnyvale Toys R Us. I have been there several times as I lived in the area for over 30 years. There have been several reports of happenings in the store. Water turning on and off mainly in the women’s bathroom, toys falling off shelves, and many employees who work at night report strange things happening. This story has been in several books and on several TV shows.

Julie says:

October 30, 2006, 4:20 pm

I have heard this story so many times and it is different every time. I thought that a little boy died on the land and was burried there that is why he plays in the store at night and knocks items off the shelves. I had not heard of a man dying.

lauren says:

November 6, 2006, 9:54 pm

um well i dont believe in this but i have heard about it but its not true

Smexy says:

November 26, 2006, 7:22 am

ok creepy!!!!!but i can deal,i think i just heard my bedroom door open..uho.

Ann says:

December 2, 2006, 2:52 pm

I live in California,and I’ve been there but never ever saw a ghost.

kelcy says:

December 18, 2006, 12:36 pm

That sounds creapy i wuold like to go there at night

tina says:

March 7, 2007, 7:01 am

yea you know if your gonna tell a “real” ghost story make sure you get the facts straight…you can’t really die of cutting of your hand unless you’re an idiot standing around letting yourself bleed to death..duh….

kalena says:

March 12, 2007, 3:11 am

Duh…If you cut off your hand and major arteries you can bleed to death without medical attention….Think about it???? How long ago did this happen? In the 1800???

jessica says:

March 28, 2007, 12:57 pm

that is so scary

DAVID says:

March 31, 2007, 7:19 pm

well……..that is gaaayyyyy dude omg ok if u want to scare us atleast use a beeter story about a ***** guy ok

yomammabiach says:

March 31, 2007, 7:20 pm

ok if the guy cut off one hand then how the fock can he cut off the other dude and a toyr us hmmm i think u should of used…….. yo mammas house

suckithunny says:

March 31, 2007, 7:21 pm

dude that guy suked my balls and it felt good lol after i cut off his hands

DAVID says:

March 31, 2007, 7:23 pm

i lauph more and more when iv seen it i live near amitivle u know that haounted house now that is crazy **** u hear screams and dont get me started to what happened to my dog!!!!

DJ says:

June 18, 2007, 3:41 pm

I remember a show called “that’s incredible” did a story on this back in the 80’s. I still remember it sice i was just a little kid when I saw it and it scared me good back ten. I just remember they set up cameras and they got a shadowy image on it. It was scary to me at the time since I was a kid.

Grim Jim says:

June 26, 2007, 2:04 pm

Yep I was going to say the same thing. They featured this story on the TV show “That’s Incredible” and it scared the **** out of me as a kid.

If I remember right the guy was either using an axe or a chainsaw back in the days when the property was farmland. He cut himself badly and bled to death.

According to the show the spirit is know to frequent a certain aisle in particular but activity has occurred throughout the store. It knocks over toys, pulls on hair, and its supposed shadowy form was videotaped and shown on the TV show.

Do a search on haunted toys r us and you’ll probably get a more complete version of the story.

cathy brady bunch says:

July 15, 2007, 7:03 pm

I grew up in the silicon valley and lived in sunnyvale for a while and i used to go to that toys r us all the time. i told my mom, when i was older, about it being haunted. she told me that she’s never going there again because the last time she was there, she had reached for a toy high up on a shelf and it fell over and hit her on the head. i guess the corner of the box was pretty sharp and cut her head slightly. she was more angry about the cut than the fact that it flew off the shelf unexplainably. i recall as a child, after seeing a story done on the place on “that’s incredible”, visiting the store and noticing some dark and dreary looking aisles off to the side. these aisles were never the “busy” ailes, and as i would walk down them, i felt uncomfortable and felt a strong urgency to leave. i was unwelcome and the energy was hostile…i’m getting a sick feeling in my stomache as i write this. i’m just curious as to why the rest of the store was more lit up than this particular section. strange. i was a skeptical child, more open-minded adult, yet i have never experienced anything supernatural. let’s hope i don’t ‘cuz i think i’ll pee my pants, hehe.

bri says:

July 17, 2007, 7:19 pm

Okay this is a true story except he cut his leg not his hands. (Of course it doesn’t make sense that he cut off both his hands because it’s not possible.) I know this story is true because my aunt & uncle used to work there 25+ yrs ago & they would close the store down after cleaning up all the aisle’s & then come in the next morning 1st thing & toys would be back on the floor.
Also having been to the store myself when I was younger I heard voices in the aisle when nobody else was there & toys that would go on w/out anyone touching them.

tiffany says:

August 25, 2007, 11:36 pm

Johnny Johnson (or Yonny Yohanson) was a Scandinavian immigrant in his mid 20s studying for the ministry, who put himself to work as a farm hand when not preaching on the circuit in Southern California in the late 1800s. One summer he took a job working for a wealthy landowner named Martin Murphy Jr. in Sunnyvale, whose wheat plantation maintained a large orchard and ample farmhouse for himself and his family. Johnson took a serious liking to Elizabeth, one of Murphy’s girls, only to be devastated when he discovered she was leaving to be wed to a wealthy lawyer back east. Johnny Johnson (or Yonny Yohanson) was a Scandinavian immigrant in his mid 20s studying for the ministry, who put himself to work as a farm hand when not preaching on the circuit in Southern California in the late 1800s. One summer he took a job working for a wealthy landowner named Martin Murphy Jr. in Sunnyvale, whose wheat plantation maintained a large orchard and ample farmhouse for himself and his family. Johnson took a serious liking to Elizabeth, one of Murphy’s girls, only to be devastated when he discovered she was leaving to be wed to a wealthy lawyer back east.

Martin Murphy Jr.

At some point the young Johnson contracted encephalitis which left him partially brain damaged and earned him the nick name “crazy Johnny” by the locals. Johnson lived and worked at the Murphy farm for many years thereafter.

As if earmarked for tragedy, the life of Yonny Johnson would take another terrible turn for the worst. While chopping wood in the orchard one day in the summer of 1884, Johnson apparently slipped with the axe and badly cut his leg. He slowly bled to death alone and far from help. Oddly enough, Murphy Jr. himself died that same year, his estate divided among his heirs. The heartbroken hired hand with the Bible and occasionally strange behavior who died a terrible death on the property was soon a long forgotten speck of historical dust in time. The Murphy plantation site would see many changes as the years passed, as wheat became less and less a viable crop and orchards began to expand and dominate the agriculture of the landscape, hailing the Santa Clara Valley area “The Garden of the World.” But in 1970, amidst the hustle and bustle of our modern times, it became the location for a 60,000 square foot Toys ‘R Us mega-store on east El Camino and Sunnyvale-Saratoga Road, not far from streets and buildings still bearing the name Murphy.

Milo says:

September 17, 2007, 6:05 am

This story is stupid…I can believe the stuff about the shadowy figure…but why does that mean he cut his hands off?? Plus how the hell do u cut BOTH hands off with an axe….did he cut one hand off then go “oops..better not go to the hospital, better use my feet to keep chooping..oh dear there goes the other hand” stupid story!

Stone Woman says:

October 15, 2007, 11:05 pm

Geesh, read the frigging story, it states quite clearly he cut his LEG. I also amazes me that you who post bullshit think you are funny. Attitudes like that get you no-where. Grow up for crying out loud!

This site seriously needs a moderator.

Lynn says:

October 27, 2007, 7:03 pm

I live in Sunnyvale and work on Murphy road right by el camino. I do all my grocery shopping at the pak n save right next to toys r us. After hearing the story from co-workers and reading it on line, I don’t cut through behind the toy store no more. Insane I know.

Pim says:

November 9, 2007, 4:14 pm

My wife and I were in this store back in the late 80’s and while walking down 1 of the aisles my wife told me someone touched her hair and said ‘Elizabeth’. Sounds weird but this is a true story.

Star says:

November 18, 2007, 1:58 am

I’ve been in that store several times, and have felt strange near the back of the store. Also, someone I knew that was doing inventory in the back room felt like they were being watched by unseen eyes.

It’s said that supposedly Jonny (Yonny) is forever searching the store and land trying to be reunited with Elizabeth.

(Unless this was some fiction created by Sylvia Browne for “That’s Incredible”) rolleyes

My brother and I both DID psychically(?) see the figure on the show on the normal film at the same time – even before it actually was revealed on the infrared film. And – Jonny appeared standing there as a fairly tall full grown MAN figure, not a young boy!

unknown says:

December 4, 2007, 5:02 pm

That’s so stupid I have never heard of a haunted Toys R Us in my life whats next stories from people who shopped there tells thier own stories about thier toys are haunted and doing scary things by themselves when nobody is playing with it dumb

oh by the way if anyone who believes the story needs to stay off that crack

steven says:

December 18, 2007, 4:50 pm

haunted toi a wus
i dont believe it and never will “)>

Sparit says:

December 20, 2007, 9:30 pm

my friend shabalobadingdong is going to go there she said she is going to buy a doll and when the doll is all wraped up and no one is touching it it will autimatically say MaMa and there is no recorder in this thing!

jam says:

February 4, 2008, 1:48 pm

My dad used to work at this toys r us during the time that this happened, & it was quite interesting to hear this story from his point of view.

rockgoddess says:

May 21, 2008, 2:23 pm

This story is definitely true. I grew up in Sunnyvale and I have been to that Toys R Us many times. I know it sounds weird because it is a Toys R Us, but I have felt many things in this store. There are spots that are extremely cold and I have seen a figure out of the corner of my eye before. You have to remember it wasn’t always a Toys R Us and what happened there before will not stop just because a kids store was built above it!

boby says:

June 9, 2008, 9:05 pm

ive heard that story before. his name was jim or something like that

annika says:

June 12, 2008, 7:58 pm

which store is this? I live next to a TRU. Not sure if its the same one though.

dana says:

June 26, 2008, 3:49 pm

Is there anyone here who lives in a house they feel may be haunted? Do you wake up in the middle of the night feeling like you are being watched? We want to hear from you!! A major production company in the Los Angeles area is looking to document your story and help find answers!! This is not Ghost Hunters…It is a new show that will be on Network TV. Great opportunity to get answers from amazing experts in the field. Families will be compensated if they are chosen!! Hurry we need to hear from you ASAP!!!

dana says:

June 26, 2008, 3:57 pm

Is there anyone here who lives in a house they feel may be haunted? Do you wake up in the middle of the night feeling like you are being watched? We want to hear from you!! A major production company in the Los Angeles area is looking to document your story and help find answers!! This is not Ghost Huntersâ?¦It is a new show that will be on Network TV. Great opportunity to get answers from amazing experts in the field. Families will be compensated if they are chosen!! Hurry we need to hear from you ASAP!!!

47 says:

June 30, 2008, 11:54 am

How do you cut off both of your hands while chopping wood? As a matter of fact, how can you cut off BOTH of your hands anyway?

Respushia says:

July 3, 2008, 5:09 pm

This Is True. Once I was At The Store With My Little Sister And A Box From The Top Shelve Fell In Front Of Us. I Was Like What The Hell. Then I Saw Something in The Corner Of My Eye In The Bathroom While I Was Peeing. Then It Vanished I dont Know But Im Still Creeped

thisgirlbelives says:

August 6, 2008, 9:48 pm

wow well i do belive in this stuff.i use to live close to sunnyvale,,-in mountainview. and i do recall going to that toys r us with my parents. but i was a little girl. so i dont remeber anything strange. anyways are there any paranormal investigators out there? i need to tell you about a school in san jose that is haunted. i have many details to tell you! please answer!

JOJO says:

August 15, 2008, 1:30 pm

I’ve done research on this Toys’r Us, and I found the Sylvia Brown was able to contact the spirit of Johnny. If you do some searching on the web, you’ll be able to find a picture of Sylvia and others sitting on the floor in one of the aisles, and Johnny is leaning/standing right across from them, it’s pretty neat.

Diana says:

October 18, 2008, 4:14 pm

I worked at this Toys R Us in the late ’80s and early 90’s. All the stories are true. Way too many “freaky” things happened in there that could not be explained. Toys falling from shelves right in front of you when no on else was around, water being tured on in the bathroom after hours when you know no one has gone in there, lights burnt out all the time in a place where they keep being replaced, toys that were put away the night before and all locked up and alarm on then next morning opening up to a messy store…yes they all happened. No he did not cut his arm, it was a leg, his name is Johnny and he is not there to harm. He gets a bit bored and like to have fun.

Derene says:

October 28, 2008, 2:00 pm

I worked at this Toy’s store from 1976-1978 on the left aisle (game aisle). There were alot of unexplained happenings. Like Diana said, we would get the store straightend and shelves stocked, only to come back down the aisle to discover it was a mess with boxes and toys on the floor. Once, a ring pull talking doll was returned because she didn’t work and was sitting in the store room in her box, then she would start saying Mama on her own without anyone near her! It was kinda creepy going upstairs alone at night. The ghost was just having fun with all of us.

Manushi Y. says:

November 5, 2008, 1:54 pm

Okay, so I’m just a kid in 7th grade. Up until I turned 8, I’d gone to my grandparents house on Mathilda St. and everytime, I’d walk with my grandma to Toys R Us and buy a doll or something stupid like that. And never once has anything gone wrong. Even now whenever I go there to help my mom shop for stuff for her daycare, I remind her that the building is haunted and walk around by myself, and nothing happens. I’ve lived in Sunnyvale for all my life, and
I’m pretty sure it isn’t haunted, though I seriously wish it was. It’s so boring here, even now I’m writing this because I finished my assignment early in class and I’ve got nothing else to do. So yeah, bye.

Karen says:

March 24, 2009, 4:18 pm

I have lived in and around the area of the ToysR’Us all of my life. I worked in the store fore several years and late at night during x-mas season we often had boxes fall and the water in the ladies room would turn itself on. Trust me it is true, and personally he is not there to cause anyone harm, He is just mischievous!

sad kitty says:

May 7, 2009, 1:46 am

poor kids thay want toys but ge a ghost

Cricket says:

May 15, 2009, 11:17 am

I’ve lived in Sunnyvale for 22 years and yes, the Toys R Us is haunted. I dated a guy who worked the night shift for about 4 years and they would have problems with boxes randomly falling off shelves, the water issue in the bathroom, noises, and cold spots. For those saying it isn’t haunted, just because you do not experience something personally does not mean it doesn’t happen.

Sarge says:

October 7, 2009, 2:28 pm

I used to live in Sunnyvale and knew about the Toys R us. It was not only on UNSOLVED MYSTERIES but other countless shows.

For you Debbie Downers out there, this story is true. Even Sylvia Brown has been there to check it out.

The founder of Sunnyvale, his last name was Murphy. The land that Toys R us is on was his. Either the servents quarters or a barn was located on the site of the “Accident”. Supposedly, the worker chopped off 1 hand by accident but bled to death. THat’s IT!

Paul B says:

October 23, 2009, 3:21 pm

Here is a link to the Toys R Us segment from “That’s Incredible.” The video is posted on my blog:

Dan says:

October 27, 2009, 5:35 am

I went to this Toys R Us around 9:00pm one night, and while looking at some board games I saw a bright colored toy ball (similar to a ping pong ball) get tossed towards me from further down the isle. I heard it hit the floor and quickly bounce towards me. I turned around quickly to see who chucked it at me, but no one was there.. I checked up and down the isles but found no one. The store was empty this late at night.

Jesssica Silva says:

January 3, 2010, 8:53 pm

Jessica says: I heard many stories but I never heard this one before.My friends tell all different stories. Like um the one they say that it use to be a storage house and that who ever went in would never come back out. January 3,2010

Jesssica Silva says:

January 3, 2010, 8:55 pm

Jessica says: I heard many stories but I never heard this one before.My friends tell all different stories. Like um the one they say that it use to be a storage house and that who ever went in would never come back out.

isabella says:

January 20, 2010, 10:04 pm

actually,it was his foot

Denise L. says:

January 23, 2010, 10:51 pm

How can you chop off BOTH of your hands while chopping wood?

jenny says:

February 25, 2010, 5:58 pm

i’ve been to a “TOYS R US” exept it was in “La Crosse ‘,Wisconsin.Someone or something was pushing kids down the old slide at the old playground and they tore it down because they witnessed the ghost.

Anna says:

June 17, 2010, 11:05 am

I live in sunnyvale. I don’t think that there is a toys r us that is haunted. I think i would know. And, I also think that there are multiple toys r us’ But who knows, i might be wrong.

Beef says:

September 5, 2010, 11:56 pm

I lived very close to it for years and it is VERY haunted! See:

Jesse says:

September 15, 2010, 3:16 pm

I actually do belive that there is somthing there. I was shopping and i came across the board games section. When i cam across the ouija board i wanted to purchace it but my mother was with me and told me not to. So in my head i was thinking i am going to get it but in pink all of a sudden the board literly flys at my feet. I totaly fliped and got the heck outa that section.

Kevin says:

September 27, 2010, 5:07 pm

I call bull on this one for one reason. Show me a toy store and I’ll show you at least two dozen security cameras. How is it that there isn’t a SINGLE FRAME from the security cameras showing anything strange happening?

Margo De'Anna says:

October 27, 2010, 9:22 pm

My PE Teacher Told Me This Story 2 years ago

Jeena says:

November 16, 2010, 8:15 pm

this is soooo reall. hahahhh. OMG

Chicken says:

November 16, 2010, 8:16 pm

i love chicken breAstss/

tara says:

December 7, 2010, 5:09 pm

Yes retards it is haunted. It used to be an old cherry orchard in the area and there was an old plantation there. The helper (not the owner) of the house was chopping wood and apparently hit himself somehow (not in the hand) and bled to death. Its in Sunnyvale and I work across the street from there. I heard about it when I was really young because everyone knows the story. Ive been in there a few times and obviously didnt see anything cause its the middle of the day, but the night crew sees and hears things and yes things have been seen and reported as being messed up and thrown everywhere at night, right after go backs were finished. Sylvia browne has done seances there and this particular place has been on tv shows about haunted places in the U.S. Google, haunted toys r us.

Anonymous says:

March 17, 2011, 6:59 pm

As a child back in the 90’s I had a very similar experience as Dan. At the time I was not aware of the history of the place. It was around 5:00PM I heard a ball bounce off and from the corner of my eye I could see a small ball rolling near me. When I turned to face the ball I realized there was no one around but felt as though someone was watching me. I remember it being very cold where I was standing and left to look for my mother. Each row I past there was no person there until I finally found my mother near the front of the store and we quickly left. Since that day I never returned.

Don says:

August 18, 2012, 7:01 pm

I grew up in this area and lived there until the age of 19.The story goes it was a farm hand named Jonny Johnson or something to that likeness who was chopping wood and cut his leg with an ax and died.He was in love with the daughter of the family who owned the land.I have been in that store many times and one time my friend and I went there to actually try and see if the legend of the haunting was real.I felt a cold chill over my body in the aisle near the restroom,bike area.My friend also felt the same chill and we started shivering and goosebumps started on both our skin.It was an uneasy feeling of being watched.I truly believe that location is haunted.There used to be an Olson’s cherry farm beside the Toys R Us which also was haunted.

Zumi says:

July 7, 2016, 4:08 pm

I like employee break room, sit in there with my lemon cake late at night. Johnny doesn’t scare me. We just leave each other alone

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