In 2014, two girls from Waukesha, Wisconsin, were arrested for a horrific crime, one made all the more horrific by how young they were at the time. Aneissa Weier and Morgan Geyser were just 12 years old when they brutally stabbed their friend Payton Leutner in a park 19 times, clearly intending to kill her. (Geyser apparently carried out the attack, but Weier orchestrated it and cheered on her cohort.)
Amazingly, Leutner survived but she’ll feel physical and emotional effects of the violent incident for the rest of her life. What could have prompted two children to try to murder another child? A fanatical devotion to Slender Man. Slender Man is not a real person. He’s a scary, tentacled, Internet-based urban legend or “creepypasta,” a Lovecraftian monster who requires his acolytes to kill in his name. Weier and Geyser reportedly believed Slender Man lived in a mansion near their homes and that they had to kill somebody so he wouldn’t kill their families.
The crime was so severe that Weier was tried as an adult. On Thursday, Judge Michael Bohre handed down a sentence: 25 years in a psychiatric institution. “It was a planned murder by kids,” Bohren said. “We can’t forget that the goal was to kill.”
People on Twitter seem to think that while justice was served, it’s a sad end to a sad story.
Killing someone because a meme said it was a pretty cool idea… 25 years of treatment seems about right.
— CB Bellerose (@sparesoul) December 22, 2017
This took way too long to get done.
— 🎄kathy hoerter🎄 (@AUmom52) December 22, 2017
Seems like a weird sentence. If she’s mentally ill, then mental care is warranted but if care contributes to improvement in mental condition why keep her in mental health facility?
— A.D. Adams (@h1gg5b0s0n) December 22, 2017
Used to hang out w this girl when I was younger. Always knew something was off
— Fuck steph curry (@white6trash9) December 22, 2017
It was a miracle her victim survived. A 12 year old stabbing another 12 year old child 19 times? The quality of that states mental care had better be good.
— A D A N N A (@T_O_N_N_A) December 22, 2017
Sad case but this is where they belong
— Trice Jackson (@trice_jackson) December 22, 2017
She can be out as soon as 3 years, so it’s like giving her probation. I don’t think is that bad.
— Johary (@Joharyspark) December 22, 2017
I feel bad, but I am glad. Not all mentally ill people kill.
— love2swim1951 (@love2swim1951) December 21, 2017
treating kids as an adult, something wrong with that
— harley davidson (@diffuser85) December 21, 2017
— anon4now (@Anonfernow) December 21, 2017