She refuses to take medication for fear of losing her “friends” Slender Man and Voldemort. When she eats, she sits under the table in her jail cell. Correctional officers say she keeps ants as pets.
Morgan Geyser, the Wisconsin girl who allegedly stabbed her friend almost to death to please a fictional character, has been in a juvenile detention center for a year without treatment. Her attorney is pushing for her case to move from adult to juvenile court, where he says she has the best chance of recovering.
Forensic psychologist Deborah Collins testified today in Waukesha County court that Geyser “does not want the voices to go away. She does not want her friends to go away.”
“She has held over time an immutable belief that Slender Man is real, that Harry Potter characters are her friends that she desperately wants to retain,” Collins added. “They are her best friends.”
The outcome of the current hearing will determine whether Geyser and her alleged accomplice Anissa Weier, 13, face up to three years in custody and extensive monitoring and mental health care—or 45 years in prison as adults, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. A judge will announce his decision in August.
Collins said that Geyser, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia, is bound to get worse if her illness is not addressed soon.
The shy and bespectacled girl—who was cuffed at the ankles and wrists during the proceeding—told Collins that Voldemort and Snape from the Harry Potter series pay her visits in detention. She also interacts with an imaginary girl named Maggie.
Collins revealed that Geyser’s problem could be genetic. She testified that Geyser’s father, Matthew, was hospitalized for schizophrenia at least four times as an adolescent, and that the illness has forced him to go on disability.
Meanwhile, a corrections officer testified that Geyser doesn’t engage with other kids and is “socially awkward.” When she eats meals, the officer said, she sits under a table in her solitary detention pod. She also feeds and plays with ants and “may consider them as pets,” the officer said.
Geyser and Weier were only 12 years old when charged with attempted homicide in a case that has entranced the national media. The two tweens supposedly plotted for months to kill their friend Payton Leutner in deference to Slender Man, a tall and faceless supernatural figure born as an Internet meme.
On May 31, 2014, they allegedly executed their plan. After a sleepover, prosecutors say, they lured Leutner to the woods to play hide and seek. Geiser is charged with stabbing Leutner 19 times on her arms, legs and torso—nearly piercing her heart—then leaving her for dead. Leutner crawled from the wooded area and was rushed to the hospital after a bicyclist saw her.
Officials say Weier later told cops that she and Geyser stabbed their pal to become “proxies” of Slender Man. They apparently believed the ghoulish character lived in a mansion in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest in northern Wisconsin. After the attack, the girls apparently began making the 300-mile trek to the forest.
Hours after the stabbing, a sheriff’s deputy found the girls—one of whom, cops say, was carrying a blade in her backpack—walking near an interstate in Waukesha, the Journal Sentinel reported.
In August 2014, Waukesha County Judge Michael Bohren ruled that Geyser was not competent to stand trial but could be in the future. But by the year’s end, Bohren said both girls were competent to face prosecution.
Two months ago, Geyser’s mother, Angie, launched an online petition asking Bohren to let her daughter receive treatment for schizophrenia outside of the detention center. More than 2,000 people have added their signatures.
The petition came after Bohren declined a request to have the girl's $500,000 bail reduced so that she could be transferred from juvie to a residential treatment center. The judge said Geyser was dangerous and a flight risk.
On the petition site, Angie Geyser asks for her daughter to get a “second chance at life.”
“Morgan has spent the majority of the past 11 months in a windowless jail, where she has no access to the outdoors and is not allowed physical contact with her family,” Angie Geyser wrote.
“This is a situation that would be harmful to the development of any child, but especially so for a child with a serious mental illness,” she added. “We are worried that if Morgan doesn’t receive treatment soon, we will lose her to her disease.”