7 things we learned about Morgan Geyser, Anissa Weier
HBO placed subscribers in the terrorizing tentacles of the Internet’s boogeyman during Monday’s premiere of Beware the Slenderman.
Though fictitious, the urban legend haunting children via the web was a real enough to be a motive for Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier to allegedly want to murder their friend, Payton (Bella) Leutner in Waukesha, Wisconsin on May 31, 2014.
Armed with a knife from Geyser’s kitchen, the two were recorded claiming they aimed to kill Leutner in order to please Slenderman and protect their families from falling victim to his wicked acts. The three girls were only 12 years old at the time of the stabbing.
In just under two hours, we learned many surprising facts about the suspects. Here are the most riveting.
- Geyser’s mother said at a young age her child lacked compassion.
Home videos of Geyser showed her happily tickling the keys of a kids’ miniature piano and interacting with a cat that lead viewers to believe she was a typical young girl. However, her mom, Angie Geyser, said she noticed early on that her child lacked empathy, citing the movie Bambi as an example.
“We were so worried to watch it with her because we thought she was gonna be so upset when the mother died,” Angie shared looking into the camera. “But the mother died and Morgan just said, ‘Run, Bambi run. Get out of there. Save yourself.’ She wasn’t sad about it.
“And I could think of a lot of other examples along those lines.” Angie continued, “where she hasn’t reacted in the way that we would expect a little girl to react.”
- Weier reportedly penned disturbing and foretelling internet posts
According to the documentary, Weier commented on several videos, which might raise an eyebrow when one considers her age and the content of the message. On Feb. 20, 2014 she allegedly wrote, “Why did the baby cross the road? BECAUSE IT WAS STRAPPED TO MY BUMPER!!!!”
On April 14 that same year, she reportedly viewed a video of a cat eating a mouse and commented, “I love how Zeus (the cat) beats the mouse to death…”
- The girls possessed an unwavering belief in Slenderman
It seemed Geyser and Weier sincerely believed in the figure created by Eric Knudsen.
“I was really scared knowing that Slenderman could easily kill my whole family in three seconds,” Weier shared during an interrogation.
Weier claimed it was Geyser’s suggestion to murder Leutner so they could become proxies of Slenderman and live in Slender Mansion. Weier said upon hearing Geyser’s plan she was “surprised, but also kind of excited.”
- Geyser and Weier’s family were both aware of Slenderman and neither thought anything of it
“While I wasn’t thrilled about her interest, I didn’t really see the harm in it either,” Angie said in an interview. “We never thought for a moment that she could possibly believe that it was real.”
Weier’s dad, Bill Weier, said his daughter showed him a picture of the mythical man once, and he didn’t feel the need to investigate any further.
- The night before the stabbing, the girls appeared “normal”
In a photograph preserving Geyser’s birthday celebration, the guest of honor, Weier, and Leutner posed on a green picnic bench at a skating rink. An unsuspecting Leutner wore a grin that stretched ear-to-ear.
“They were being normal little girls,” Angie said. “They were running up and down the stairs holding hands and giggling. There was no indication that anything was off or that we had anything to be worried about.”
Angie shared that the next morning, “the girls were laughing and having a good time. And they asked if they could go to the park, and I didn’t think anything of it.”
- Murder and death preoccupied Weier’s thoughts
During an interrogation, Geyser revealed that her friend came up with so many murder plots she couldn’t keep track of their plan. Weier said during questioning that in one of her plans they “kill Bella, put her under some covers to make it look like she was sleeping,” and run.
Weier also shared that she gathered information about the murder from a site that houses horror stories.
“From what I’ve read on the Creepypasta Wiki, it’s easier to kill people when they’re either asleep or unconscious,” Weier told a detective. “When you look into a person’s eyes you can see yourself, and you don’t want to be killing yourself. So I asked Bella if she could put herself to sleep.”
- Weier and Geyser exhibited very few emotions during questioning
Though viewers saw Weier shed a few tears during her investigation, she and Geyser frequently appeared to lack emotion while recounting the stabbing.
Weier calmly revealed that after she hit Leutner’s head against the concrete, they played a game of hide-and-seek so she and Geyser could act like “lionesses chasing down a zebra.”
Very matter-of-factly Weier said Geyser handed her the blade and said, “’I can’t do it. You know where all the soft spots are.’ And then I give it back to her and say, ‘You do it. Go ballistic. Go crazy. Make sure she’s down.’”
In spite of stabbing her best friend since the fourth grade 19 times, Geyser explained in questioning that “it didn’t feel like anything. It was like… air,” she said.
At its conclusion, the documentary stated that Geyser and Weier will be tried as adults in court in 2017. Both have entered a plea of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.
In the film, psychiatrist Dr. Kenneth Casimir revealed Geyser had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, as her father, Matt Geyser, had been years ago.
Psychologist Dr. Michael Caldwell said Weier had schizotypy, which he defined as a “diminished ability to determine what’s real and what’s not real.”
Erin Jensen, USA TODAY