|Wisconsin girls, 12, charged with trying to kill classmate|
By Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Today at 9:12 a.m.
The 12-year-old girls had been plotting the murder for months, police say.
On Monday, the two Waukesha girls were charged in Waukesha County Circuit Court as adults with attempted first-degree intentional homicide, each facing up to 65 years in prison. Their victim, another 12-year-old from Waukesha, was stabbed 19 times by one or both suspects, according to a criminal complaint. All three attend Horning Middle School in Waukesha.
The girls are being held on $500,000 bail each. The pre-teens attempted murder, they told police, to pay homage to a fictional character who they believed was real after reading about him on a website devoted to horror stories.
On Saturday, a bicyclist found the victim, lying on the sidewalk and covered in blood, with injuries to her arms, legs and torso. She had managed to crawl out of the woods, where the suspects had left her. She was rushed to a hospital, where she was in stable condition Monday evening, but fighting for her life.
A Waukesha County sheriff's deputy found the two suspects hours later, walking near I-94 in Waukesha. A knife with a five-inch blade was in one of the girls' backpacks.
A criminal complaint filed Monday detailed the allegations.
Both suspects explained the stabbing to police referencing their dedication to Slender Man, the character they discovered on a website devoted to horror stories.
One girl told police that Slender Man is the "leader" of Creepypasta, and in the hierarchy of that world, one must kill to show dedication. She said the other suspect told her they should become "proxies" of Slender Man — a paranormal figure known for his ability to create tendrils from his fingers and back — and kill their friend to prove themselves worthy of him. She said she was surprised by the suggestion, but also excited to prove skeptics wrong and show that Slender Man really did exist.
The suspects believed that "Slender," as one girl called him, lived in a mansion in the Nicolet National Forest in northern Wisconsin. The plan was to kill the victim and walk to Slender's mansion.
After school on Friday, one suspect told police, she and the other suspect went to her house, where she packed a backpack with clothes, granola bars, water bottles and a picture of her mother, father and siblings. She said she didn't want to forget what her family looked like after leaving for Slender's mansion.
The girls then went to the other suspect's house. With her father, they picked up the victim and all went to Skateland.
They came home around 9:30 p.m. and went to sleep.
The two suspects originally had planned to commit the murder at 2 a.m. Saturday, according to the criminal complaint. They'd duct tape their victim's mouth, stab her in the neck and pull the covers up to make it look like she was sleeping. Then they'd run.
But the plans changed after they'd been out rollerskating Friday night. Instead, they'd try to kill her in a bathroom at a nearby park the next morning. One of the suspects knew there was a drain in the floor for the blood to go down, she told police.
The next morning, the mother of the suspect who hosted the sleepover said they could go and play in the park. As they left, one suspect lifted up the left side of her white jacket; the knife was tucked in her waistband. The other girl told police she gave a look with "wide eyes." When asked by police what that meant, she said, "I thought, dear God, this was really happening."
Once in the park bathroom, one girl had a "nervous breakdown" and the other suspect had to calm her down. She then suggested they go for a walk, pointing out a wooded area. They could play hide and seek, distract the victim, then kill her. One suspect told the victim where to hide and told her to lie facedown in the dirt. The girl refused. She then pushed the victim and sat on her, thinking the other girl could stab her. But the victim began to yell and complain that she couldn't breathe. She was attracting attention, so the suspect got off her.
Soon after, one of the girls tackled the victim and started stabbing her. The other suspect said the victim screamed, "I hate you. I trusted you."
When police asked one of the suspects if she knew what it meant to kill someone, one suspect said, "I believe it's ending a life and I regret it." She also said, "The bad part of me wanted her to die, the good part of me wanted her to live."
The other suspect's report to police was much shorter.
She confirmed the details of the first girl's interview with law enforcement officials, but said she thought that the other suspect stabbed the victim first.
In court on Monday, family members of one suspect broke into tears several times during her appearance.
"The family is very horrified at what has happened," attorney Donna Kuchler said.
Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel stressed the girls were innocent until proven guilty, but added he has never encountered allegations like this as a prosecutor.
"Most of the time in a crime like this, with such violence like this, there's spur of the moment, there's the heat of passion," he said.
This time, he said, it was calculated.
"It's troubling when a person lashes out in anger," he said. "It's more troubling when they lash out in cold blood. Isn't that the worst kind of killer, the cold-blooded killer?"
Schimel, a Republican running for state attorney general, said he had to bring the case in adult court because of the level of charges against the girls. He said he expected the girls' attorneys to attempt to "reverse waive" them into juvenile court, which he said he would resist.
If moved into juvenile court and convicted, the girls could be held at most until they were 25 years old, Schimel said.
"It's a very shocking incident. There's no two ways about it," Schimel said.