On Monday, two 12-year-old girls from Waukesha, Wisconsin were charged as adults for the attempted first-degree intentional homicide of another 12-year-old girl.
What caused these girls to want to kill one of their best friends? According to police, the girls stabbed the other girl nearly to death to please a mythological creature known as the "Slender Man."
The girls claimed to have learned about Slender Man on creepypasta.wikia.com; a site dedicated to horror stories.
According to the site, Slender Man's "appearance is that of an abnormally tall human with long arms and no face whom is wearing a business suit." He has no eyes, mouth, or any other facial features, and is generally over six-feet tall.
One of the attackers explained that they had planned the attack for months to please the Slender Man so that he would allow them to live with him in the fictional Nicolet National Forest.
They invited their friend to a slumber party over the weekend, and planned on killing her that night so that they would not have to look into her eyes. They later decided to put it off, but the next day they got together to play hide and seek, and decided they would attack her then.
One girl told the other to "go ballistic, go crazy." The girls then stabbed their "friend" 19 times before leaving her to die; one of the stab wounds missed the victim's heart by only a millimeter.
The victim stumbled away from the girls, shouting that she hated them, and somehow managed to crawl out of the woods. She was later found by a passing bicyclist, who called the police. The victim was rushed to the hospital and into surgery and, as of Monday, she was listed as being in stable condition.
The attackers were each given a $500,000 bond, and if they are convicted, they could face up to sixty five years in prison.
Image via Wikimedia Commons