MILWAUKEE – A girl from Wisconsin who was lured into the woods by two friends and stabbed 19 times in an attempt to please a fictional horror character called Slender Man said she had come to terms with some aspects of the attack but that ‘she was still sleeping with broken scissors “just in case.”
In his first interview on the 2014 attack, which aired on Friday, Payton Leutner told ABC News that despite her lingering trauma, she “has come to accept all the scars I have.”
“It’s just a part of me,” she said.
Leutner was 12 when two of her 12-year-old friends Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier lured her to a sleepover at a nearby woodland park in the Milwaukee suburb of Waukesha, investigators said.
In the ABC interview, Leutner recalled how, before the stabbing, Weier told him to lie on the ground and cover himself with sticks and leaves to hide, as part of what Leutner believed to be a game of hiding. hidden.
“But it was really just a trick to get me out there,” Leutner said.
With Leutner on the ground, Geyser stabbed her 19 times before she and Weier left Leutner for dead. Leutner said she eventually got up, grabbed some trees for support and made her way to a nearby road where a cyclist found her and called for help.
The case gained attention because of the girls’ youth, the violence of the attack and the fact that both attackers said they did it because they believed Slender Man would hurt them and their children. families.
Geyser and Weier were charged as adults and ultimately pleaded guilty, with Geyser given a harsher sentence because she was the one who actually stabbed, prosecutors said.
Geyser was sentenced to spend 40 years in a mental institution. Weier has been engaged in a mental health facility for 25 years.
Leutner told ABC News that charging his abusers as adults was the right move.
“If they stole a candy bar, of course it’s a child. But you tried to kill someone. It’s an adult crime,” she said.
Leutner said she no longer wanted to see or speak to Geyser and Weier again, and that what Geyser had done was “probably unforgivable.”
She said she wasn’t surprised when she heard about Geyser’s motif “because she believed in this thing so much that she would do anything for it.” Still, she said “it was a little shocking for me to see that they had this big, huge plan that they had been working on for months.”
Even though she no longer wants to talk to her attackers, Leutner was surprised when asked what she would say to Geyser if she spoke to him.
“I would probably thank her first,” Leutner said. “I would say, ‘Just because of what she did, I have the life that I have now. I really, really love him and have a plan. I didn’t have a plan when I was 12, and now I’m doing it because of everything I’ve been through. ‘”
Leutner, now 17, is a high school student and plans to go to college in 2020. She wants to pursue a medical career, which she says is a goal inspired by what happened to her.