(WAUKESHA, Wis.) — A 12-year-old girl accused of helping to stab a friend 19 times to please a fictional character known as the Slender Man has been found to be not competent in a psychological evaluation sought by her lawyers.
Morgan Geyser must undergo a second evaluation requested by the prosecution to determine if she has a mental disease or defect that could affect the case.
Geyser and Anissa Weier, both 12, made separate appearances in court Wednesday. They are charged with first degree attempted murder and the shackles on their wrists could be heard jangling as they entered and exited the courtroom.
The pre-teens are charged in the alleged stabbing of a friend on May 31. Authorities said the girls admitted assaulting their friend as a means to please the Slender Man, a faceless fictional character.
Geyser’s attorneys revealed in court Wednesday that she was found to be not competent in the evaluation that they requested following her arrest, but they objected to the additional test sought by the prosecution, arguing that it is premature because they have not entered a plea.
Mental evaluations and diagnostic exams are often ordered by prosecutors if the plaintiff has cited a mental illness as part of their defense, but her legal team has not entered such a plea, he said. Geyser was the first of the two girls to appear in the Waukesha County Courthouse Wednesday morning and she was accompanied by her attorneys Donna Kuchler and Anthony Cotton.
Her mother cried silently from a seat in the courtroom when Geyser appeared in court.
Geyser had a long braid on the right side of her face that she fidgeted with throughout the hearing.
Weier appeared in a separate hearing. Her father was in the courtroom but remained stoic during the brief hearing.
Weier’s attorneys had not ordered a competency evaluation, so her hearing was focused on logistical issues between her legal team and the court.
Her public defender, Joseph Smith Jr., said he was reserving his ability to request a competency hearing at a later date.
Geyser and Weier are being tried as adults because Wisconsin law dictates that anyone above the age of 10 charged with first degree murder or attempted murder will not be considered juveniles.
The 12-year-old victim, who has not been identified because of her age, was said to have nearly died from her wounds but has since been released from the hospital and her parents have released new details about her recovery.
“She continues to amaze us in her ability to persevere and move forward — taking one day at a time,” they said in a statement their family spokesman Stephen Lyons shared with ABC News on Wednesday. “Much of our strength comes from knowing that there is so much ‘good’ coming from so many people, and we continue to witness this firsthand from the compassion given to our little girl from around the world.”
“Both the mother, father, little girl and her brother are working with professionals to not only deal with the little girl’s physical injuries but her emotional ones as well,” Lyons said. “They are so thankful for the support for their medical bills. That’s why the GoFundMe.com/HeartsForHealingWI campaign is so important and special to this family.”
“The preliminary hearing won’t take place for at least 30 days, and probably even later than that,” he added.
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