I have studied criminal psychology. I am fascinated by what triggers an individual to commit horrible acts of violence against a fellow human being, and have spent countless hours in classrooms, talking to forensic psychologists, learning from members of law enforcement, and reading numerous books and articles to learn all I can. The killer’s mind is featured prominently in all of my novels.
With all of the case studies I have reviewed, each one is still shocking and upsetting. This is true exponentially so when the criminal mind is housed inside a child.
You likely are familiar with the attempted murder that took place earlier this year in Wisconsin, when two twelve-year-old girls lured a classmate to one of their homes for a slumber party but instead took her into the woods and stabbed her repeatedly before leaving her for dead. The two would-be killers later claimed they were sacrificing their supposed friend to a fictional character on the internet known as Slenderman. Amazingly, the victim managed to crawl for help and was found clinging to life hours later by a bicyclist.
One of the alleged assailants, Morgan Geyser, was determined by a judge last week to be incompetent, for the time being, to stand trial. Geyser was interviewed by two psychologists who agreed with this determination. They stated that Geyser believed she had mind control powers and that she could talk to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter series. The court will reconvene in November to review the competency issue again and determine if medication can change Geyser’s ability to assist in her own defense.
Morgan Geyser and her friend Anissa Weier are currently charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide and they are facing this charge as adults, which their attorneys are hoping to chance.
Geyser’s display for the psychologists and her clearly disturbed behavior in stabbing a friend leaves so many questions. What were the signs? Could these mental issues have stayed under the radar? Were teachers or parents worried that there were problems but afraid to address them? As the legal stage of this case unfolds, I imagine these questions will be asked again and again.
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