The mysterious UFO flew northward from the south, paused, then changed direction, flying eastward. Puzzled by the sight of a glowing orb in the sky, the witness called his family to view the spectacle, Open Minds reports.
The unnamed witness told MUFON, "It traveled towards our house northbound, stopped, and changed direction to the east. I called my family to witness the object."
The UFO stopped mid-flight and hovered mid-air as its orange-red glow pulsated and expanded. It expanded to a maximum diameter before it began receding.
As the orb receded, it split into two. A brighter and larger orb dropped from a smaller orb and floated earthward. After release of the larger orb, the intensity of glow from the smaller orb faded as it drifted away slowly eastward and disappeared into the night.
Meanwhile, the glow of the larger orb also diminished as it floated earthward and disappeared.
"The object stopped, flashed very brightly several times and then discarded something," the witness said. "There was glowing discharge from the bottom of the object. The object lost brightness intensity and then slowly went away."
"This was the second time I have seen the same object do the exact same thing in nearly the same place. The first sighting was slightly farther southeast and farther away. This time it was close," the witness said.
MUFON officials in Washington investigated the puzzling case but were unable to determine the nature of the mysterious UFO. But alien and UFO enthusiasts believe that the witness and his family had a rare sighting of an alien craft or robotic probe releasing a detachable landing module.
According to James Clarkson, MUFON state director in Washington, "The reporting witness stated that he walked out to his patio and he observed a brightly glowing object that appeared to be flying from the south in the direction of his residence in Spokane Valley."
Clarkson's report mentions "radar anomalies" detected at the time of the sighting. He explained that a retired NOAA official with expertise in weather and radar gave an evaluation of "anomalous radar returns" that appear to coincide in space and time with the reported sighting.
"There were radar anomalies present in the area that may correspond to what was taken on the video recording," he wrote.
Clarkson also estimated that the UFO was proably about 1,900 feet from the witnesses and may have been about 54 feet in diameter.
An independent report by a second group of witness appears to corroborate the report by the witness and his family. The second group of witnesses, at a location about a mile away, reported sighting an orange orb in the sky at about 6 p.m. local time.
Although Clarkson noted that an air force base -- the Fairchild Air Force Base -- was only about 16 miles northwest of Spokane, he explained in his report that, "There is no known natural phenomena that would produce what is visible."
"I am closing this case as a UAV. There is High Strangeness, High Witness Credibility and Technical Evidence."
"The argument can be made for an unknown type of aerial military craft, but the weather and location do not seem appropriate for a military exercise," he wrote.
However, UFO enthusiasts have expressed skepticism at the suggestion that the UFO may have been a military UAV, saying that the details of the sighting were not consistent with any known military or civilian craft.
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