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Adult trial scheduled for young defendants in stabbing case

Ohio residents may have heard about the so-called 'Slender Man" stabbing case in Wisconsin. On May 31, 2014, two 12-year-old girls in Waukesha stabbed their 12-year-old friend 19 times and then left her in the woods. The girl survived the attack, and it was later revealed that the girls accused of stabbing her were obsessed with the fictional character Slender Man.

Although the accused girls are now both 13 years old, they were scheduled to stand trial in adult court on Oct. 15 after pleading not guilty to their charges. Attorneys for both of the girls stood mute when they were asked to enter pleas, which is a way for criminal defense attorneys to object to the court's jurisdiction. A lawyer for one of the defendants said that she is still hoping the case will be moved into juvenile court. Both defendants could spend as many as 65 years in prison for first-degree attempted homicide. If their case is moved to the juvenile court system, the sentence could be much shorter. One of the defendants told a police officer that she and the other defendant began planning the stabbing about six months before it happened. The girls believed that they needed to murder their friend so that they could live with Slender Man in a mansion in the forest.

A lawyer may be able to help an underaged defendant who is facing the possibility of being tried in the adult court system. By arguing for the case to be heard in juvenile court, a lawyer may be able to help the defendant to achieve a significantly reduced sentence.

Source: ABC News, "'Slender Man' Stabbing: Not Guilty Pleas Entered for Teens," Emily Shapiro, Aug. 21, 2015

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