Morgan Geyser, a Wisconsin teenager who attempted to murder her 12-year-old friend, was ordered to spend 40 years in a mental institution by a Waukesha County court on Thursday, CNN reports. Geyser intended to sacrifice her friend to win the favor of an online fictional character called "Slenderman."
Geyser pleaded guilty to the murder charge last October to avoid jail time. She was deemed not responsible for her actions due to mental illness. During testimony, expert witnesses said Geyser was making psychological progress.
However, Waukesha County Circuit Judge Michael Bohren emphasized that the crime was premeditated when giving in his decision. "We can't forget what we are dealing with," said Bohren. "And we can't forget that this was an attempted murder."
Geyser and another friend, Anissa Weier, attempted to kill Payton Leutner in 2014 in Wisconsin. All three girls were 12 years old at the time. After stabbing Leutner 19 times, Geyser and Weier left the victim for dead, but she was found by a cyclist and recovered at a hospital. Geyser and Weier told authorities they committed the crime to become "proxies" to the Slenderman, whom they believed would hurt their families.
Weier was sentenced to 25 years in a mental hospital last December. "I want everyone involved to know I deeply regret everything that happened that day," Weier told the court, according to CBS. "I know nothing I say is going to make this right, nothing I say is going to fix what I broke. I'll do whatever I have to do to make sure this doesn't happen again."
Prosecutors were pushing for Geyser to spend the maximum possible period – 40 years – in a mental hospital, according to the Chicago Tribune.