“The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” -Charles Baudelaire, 1864
On April 23, 2014, a 13-year-old girl in Cincinnati, Ohio, attacked her mother with a knife, inflicting multiple wounds.
On May 31, 2014, in Waukesha, Wis., two 12-year-old girls, Morgan Geyser (below left) and Anissa Weir (below right), held down and stabbed a 12-year-old classmate 19 times. Thanks to the intervention of a passing cyclist, the victim survived the attack. The two girls were charged as adults with first-degree intentional homicide and are facing up to 65 years in prison.
On June 8, 2014 in Las Vegas, a young married couple, 31-year-old Jerad and 22-year-old Amanda Miller, gunned down two policemen at a restaurant, then a shopper at a WalMart before killing themselves.
What do all three violent incidents have in common?
The mother of the Cincinnati girl, neither of whose names was released, told WLWT-TV in Cincinnati that her daughter was wearing a white mask when she attacked her with a knife in the kitchen. The mother said, “We found things that she had written and she made reference to Slender Man. She also made references to killing.” The girl is facing charges in juvenile court.
Geyser and Weir stabbed their friend because they believe committing murder is a first step to becoming “proxies” or acolytes of SlenderMan, who they believe to be real and living in a mansion in the Nicolet National Forest in northern Wisconsin. Geyser believes SlenderMan watches her, teleports, and can read minds.
The Millers had posted photos of themselves on Facebook dressed as SlenderMan and as the demonic Joker in “Batman.” A neighbor Krista Koch told KTNV-TV that Jerad Miller would dress up as SlenderMan and Joker from “Batman,” while Amanda would dress up as the character Harley Quinn.
SlenderMan is depicted as a thin, spectral, unnaturally tall man wearing a black suit with a blank featureless face and ominous tentacles sprouting from his back. Stories of the SlenderMan typically have “him” stalking, abducting, or traumatizing people, particularly children. He is associated with the forest and has the ability to teleport. Proximity to the SlenderMan is often said to trigger a “Slender sickness” — a rapid onset of paranoia, nightmares and delusions accompanied by nosebleeds.
Incredibly, although SlenderMan is an entirely fictitious character, “he” has spawned a deadly cult with many followers believing “him” to be real. Google lists more than 58 million “hits” for SlenderMan.
National Enquirer spoke to three experts about the unsettling SlenderMan phenomenon.
Steve Hassan, an expert of cults and author of the new book Freedom of Mindsays “SlenderMan is attracting a cult-like devotion. This is turning kids into killers. They are being encouraged to fantasize violence – and actually do it!”
Curt Kissinger, a juvenile court administrator in Waukesha county where the Geiser-Weir stabbing took place, said, “I find this very frightening – (SlenderMan) motivates children to kill people!”
Psychologist and author Dr. Judy Kuriansky, who has treated victims of cults, warned parents to be “terribly frightened” of this cult that’s sweeping across U.S. schools. “Because SlenderMan has no face, kids can ‘become’ Slender Man. He is a mirror, and kids can project themselves into him. This is something we’ve never seen before – the emergence of a dangerous cult with a fictional leader!”
Dr. Eowyn’s article first appeared at Fellowship of the Minds.