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Wisconsin ‘Slender Man’ stabbing defendant pleads guilty

Anissa Weier, one of the two Waukesha girls charged in the 2014 Slender Man stabbing, pleaded guilty Monday (Michael Sears/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/TNS)

Bruce Vielmetti

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

WAUKESHA, Wis. — Anissa Weier, one of the two Waukesha, Wis., girls charged in the 2014 Slender Man stabbing, pleaded guilty Monday to a reduced charge and will proceed to trial only on whether her mental condition should make her legally responsible.

Weier's attorney and prosecutors announced the resolution Monday morning at a status conference ahead of her trial, which is scheduled to begin next month. Assistant District Attorney Ted Szcaupakiewicz said the family of the victim, Payton Leutner, support the plea arrangement.

Weier, now 15, pleaded guilty to attempted second-degree homicide, as a party to a crime, with use of a deadly weapon.

If a jury finds her not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect, she agrees she would not seek conditional release from a state mental hospital until July 2020.

If the jury rejects the insanity defense, prosecutors agree to recommend a sentence of 10 years in prison, plus 10 years of extended supervision. Weier faced a possible maximum prison sentence of 45 years in prison, plus 20 years of extended supervision if convicted of attempted first-degree homicide.

For the first time since her arrest as a 12-year-old, more than three years ago, Weier, now a much more mature looking and sounding teenager, spoke at some length in court. She had to explain to Circuit Judge Michael Bohren that she understood what she had done, and the consequences of pleading guilty to the new charge.

For the most part, Weier repeated the explanations she offered to a detective the day of her arrest, May 31, 2014. But for the first time, she said she feared not only that Slender Man would harm her and family if she didn't kill her classmate, but that she feared Morgan Geyser, her co-defendant, would return to Waukesha and kill her if Weier didn't try to flee with her after the actual stabbing occurred.

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