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Dr. Buzzard’s Voodoo Can Give Your Boss the ‘Hotfoot’

July 31, 1989 GMT

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) _ If your boss is making life miserable, Earnest ″Dr. Buzzard″ Bratton says he can solve your problem with a couple of shiny dimes, a teaspoon of black cat oil and an incantation over a cemetery grave, plus $1,200 of your cash.

″A piece of cake,″ says Bratton, a self-proclaimed voodoo witch doctor in this Washington suburb who says he’s licensed by the state of Virginia to administer herbs and potions.

″I have your boss removed from his job,″ he says. ″I give him what I call the hotfoot. It works, no doubt about it. If it doesn’t work, there’s no dogs in Georgia.″


Bratton, 57, a native of Gaffney, S.C., says he was born with magical powers and perfected them with the help of ghostly visions. He boasts he can improve his clients’ sex lives, rid them of pesky neighbors, bring them good luck at the racetrack, retire debts, cure rheumatism and banish assorted spells and curses.

He says he can even help President Bush.

″Bush is all right. He’s doing the best he can, but he seems a little disoriented, a little shaky,″ he said. ″It would be a good idea for him to come see the doctor. I could give him some breathing room.″

Bratton’s basement apartment is littered with press clippings, snapshots of Dr. Buzzard with fellow celebrities on late-night television shows, and clumps of stuffing torn from his Naugahyde sofa by his pet cat, Silver Dumpster.

Bratton is proud of his videotape lecture titled ″Voodoo Hoodoo Youdoo.″ The Learning Annex, a local university without walls where he lectured recently, declared that ″Dr. Buzzard is to voodoo what Jane Fonda is to Spandex.″ Voodoo’s been his business since he was 9.

A table top in his apartment is covered with the tools of his dark trade: candles in the shape of skull and crossbones, a jar of ″confusion oil,″ a bottle of all-purpose ″Hoyt’s Cologne,″ a plastic bag of graveyard dirt and another containing small blue stones used for ″eliminating ordinary jinxes″ during a good soak in the bathtub.

There’s a three-eyed coconut for ″sending people you don’t like out of town,″ which Bratton says he’d like to use against the Rev. Jesse Jackson, and a ″Samson doll″ which he claims can save innocent prisoners from the electric chair, with the collaboration of his reclusive black cat.

A dried hawk’s claw is helpful in finding missing persons, Bratton says, and such oddments as a buckeye, arrowroot, lodestone and ″devil’s shoestrings″ make dandy good-luck charms when carried in a red flannel sack.

His clients’ most frequent complaint is a lousy sex life, and the witch doctor claims he has the perfect cure: drink a potion containing two beaten brown eggs mixed with 7-Up every morning for 12 days.

And ″to put spice back in your life and keep on truckin’,″ he says, carry a bunch of medium, brown-skinned onions in the briefcase, purse or car trunk and eat one raw onion within 15 minutes after having sex. ″You’ll jump up and down like you’re in Birmingham,″ he says.

Bratton says he is capable of using his voodoo powers to have someone killed within three hours. He would take dampened graveyard dirt from a cow horn, inject it into a lemon with a golden-eyed needle, utter some mumbo-jumbo and ″it’s goodbye Charlie.″

But Dr. Buzzard abhors violence and says he’d never take someone’s life. Instead, he prefers to find kinder, gentler solutions to life’s problems.

Tear up your credit cards, he says, and go into business for yourself. ″A job is just a shortcut to the grave.″ Pray every night, and keep your goals to yourself because ″secrecy is independency.″

″From an anthill to a milestone, success and progress is what I’m looking for,″ Bratton says with a benevolent smile.