The world at large was recently horrified to learn that two teenage girls stabbed another 12 year old female, in an attack that was reported to police as committed in the name of fictional character Slender Man. On Tuesday, the victim’s parents reported that she was in stable enough condition to go to the movies with her father.
The statement issued by the victim’s family to the press in late June said that the girl, who was stabbed 19 times, still has a lot of days of recovery and medical care ahead of her. However, her condition has now stabilized sufficiently to allow her to attend “a ‘daddy-daughter night at the movies’”. The father-daughter pair reportedly “thoroughly enjoyed a Disney film”, which was followed by “a stop for a much-deserved treat at the snack area”. The same statement included two photos taken in the family’s home, as well as accounts of an outpour of support for her recovery, sent from people around the United States and the entire world. The first photograph is one of the victim’s room, in which an artist built a tree canopy, from many purple hearts made from construction paper and sent to the girl’s family from around the world. The second photo features the girl, whose face is not displayed in the image, as she holds a thank-you card. The gesture is her response to the many well-wishers who sent her their good thoughts from around the world.
The case made headlines all over the Internet, as well as in classic media, when, last months, two twelve year-old girls attacked a third one, in order to please Slender Man. This fictitious character is a ghost without a face, who purportedly haunts abandoned locations and appears in horror fan fiction published online. Slender Man always wears a black suit, according to these stories. The meme has been floating around the Internet for several years now and was considered marginal, until it crossed over into the mainstream, due to this nearly tragic story.
The attack also raised obvious questions regarding the mental health of the two attackers. The court before which the case was brought has already ordered a mental examination for one of the girls. There has been no similar exam ordered for the second girl, but her lawyer has stated he is considering raising the issue of mental competence, as a means for her defense. The public outcry following the news of the attack also saw many asking that the girls be tried as adults, owing to the fact that their gesture was premeditated.