Two youths in Colombia reportedly committed suicide in late August as the sick “Momo suicide challenge” continues to spread worldwide.
A 12-year-old girl and a 16-year-old boy took their own lives, within just 48 hours of each other, according to local radio outlet Caracol. The deaths happened in the municipality of Barbosa, in the north west part of the Colombian area of Santander, according to the Daily Mail.
Local media, including RCN Radio, reported the teen boy likely knew the younger girl and passed the game to her, before killing himself. A mere 48 hours later, the 12-year-old girl was found hanged.
Police seized the children’s phones, which were said to have messages linking them to the Momo suicide game.
“Apparently, they practiced this game through WhatsApp and it invited the young people to hurt themselves,” government secretary Janier Landono said. “The game has different challenges and the suicide is at the end.”
The reported deaths are the first to be linked to the game in Colombia, which is thought to have originated on a Facebook group page. Police in Argentina are investigating whether “Momo” is linked to the suicide of a 12-year-old girl in the district of Escobar, which occurred last month.
WhatsApp did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.
The vile “Momo suicide game” has been garnering attention after it began spreading on WhatsApp, prompting police warnings. If players fail to complete the challenges in the game, they receive threatening messages from an avatar dubbed Momo, a bird-like woman with eyes protruding out of her head, who says the user will be cursed with an “evil spell.”
There is also a Momo doll created by Japanese doll artist Midori Hayashi, though Hayashi has nothing to do with the vulgar video game.
“Momo” is a viral challenge that asks people to add a contact via WhatsApp. The user is then urged to commit self-harm or suicide. The “game” has fueled comparisons to the sinister “Blue Whale challenge” that led to reports of suicides in Russia and the U.S, as well as the online fictional character of “Slender Man.” In 2014, two 12-year-old girls in Wisconsin attempted to kill a classmate in an attempt to please the horror character.
Last month, the “Momo” game made its way into the popular “Minecraft” video game, which prompted Microsoft to clamp down on it.