A Wisconsin teenager who admitted to taking part in the knife of a classmate to please horror character Slender Man thus avoiding prison time after a jury determined Friday that she was mentally ill at the time of the incident.
Anissa Weier, 15, pleaded guilty to attempted second-degree intentional homicide in a enter into negotiations with attorneys but claimed she was mentally ill at the time of the attack and was not responsible for her actions. A plea agreement called for her to expend at least three years in a mental hospital if judged mentally ill, and 10 years imprisonment if not.
Weier and Morgan Geyer enticed classmate Payton Leutner into the woods at a park in Waukesha, a Milwaukee suburb in 2014. Geyser stabbed Leutner 19 days while Weier exhorted her on, examiners said. A passing bicyclist found Leutner, who was scarcely alive, in the woods. All three daughters were 12 -years-old at the time.
Both Weier and Geyer told sleuths they felt they had to kill Leutner to become Slender Man’s “proxies, ” or servants, and protect their families from the supernatural ogre. The character originated from an internet “creepypasta.” A creepypasta are horror stories written and circulated on the internet.
Slender Man, a monster illustrated as a long-limbed, lean man in a black suit, with no face, is one of the more well-known creepy pasta personalities, Time reported.
Maura McMahon, Weier’s lawyer, said she hoped the example revealed that children is a possibility handling mental issues lost on adults who have become too busy with their own lives to pay attention and resources abound to help them.
“Life is better for children when adults around them are in communication with each other, ” she said.
Deputy District Attorney Ted Szczupakiewicz declined remark. Leutner’s family left the courtroom in silence; a victim witness coordinator told reporters the family had no comment.
Judge Michael Bohren ordered a pre-commitment investigation report on Weier and said he would hold a hearing to decide how long to commit her after the report is completed. He could sentence her more severely than the plea agreement calls for, including up to a 25 -year commitment, the same as the maximum prison time she could have received.
Though that first verdict wasn’t read in court, defense attorney McMahon said 10 of 12 jurors — the minimum required by law — voted Weier was mentally ill. On a second question that jurors had to decide — whether she was criminally responsible for her actions — 10 jurors also voted she was not.
McMahon claimed Weier was lonely and depressed stemming from her parent’s divorce, and she latched onto Geyser. The two girls became obsessed with Slender Man and Weier believed the monster could read her intellect and would kill her family or her if she talked about him, McMahon claimed.
However, Szczupakiewicz argued that the girls schemed the two attacks for at least four months. He asked jurors to hold why if the girls were so afraid of Slender Man they awaited so long to assault Leutener. He also pointed out that Weier told sleuths she was not afraid of the character until after the attack.
“It comes down to did she have to or did she want to? ” Szczupakiewicz said. “It wasn’t kill or be killed. It was a choice and she needs to be held criminally responsible.”
Weier, bespectacled and dressed in a long gray-and-white cardigan, visibly trembled in her seat during her closing. She was not available afterward, but McMahon said she was alleviated and exclaimed in accordance with the verdict.
Geyser has pleaded not guilty to one count of attempted first-degree intentional murder by reason of mental disease or defect. Her trial is set to begin Oct. 9.
The Associated Press contributed to this report .
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