Judge denies Morgan Geyser's request to be released from mental institution

Morgan Geyser
Posted at 5:17 PM, Apr 10, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-11 16:34:12-04

WAUEKSHA, Wis. — The Slender Man case that shocked the community a decade ago is back in a Waukesha County courtroom.

A judge denied Morgan Geyser's request to be released from a mental institution. The other girl involved, Anissa Weier is already out. The two girls were 12 years old when they attacked their friend and fellow sixth grader Payton Leutner.

The second day of that hearing continued Thursday morning. Geyser's defense team still hasn't introduced their doctor, who is expected to explain why she should be released.

Now 21 year-old Geyser has sat quietly in the courtroom, mainly with her head down and her hair covering her face. She listens while doctors and lawyers talk about whether she is still a danger to the public.

“My opinion is she still presents a risk of significant bodily harm to herself or others,” said Deborah Collins, a psychologist testifying for the prosecution.

Girls Stabbing Plot
Morgan Geyser speaks with attorney Anthony Cotton, Feb. 1, 2018. Geyser, 20, is asking a judge in Waukesha County to order her release as he did last year for her co-defendant, Anissa Weier. A hearing is scheduled Thursday, June 23, 2022. Geyser and Weier, also 20, pleaded guilty, but not guilty due to mental disease to attempted homicide after luring Payton Leutner into a Waukesha park following a sleepover in May 2014. Geyser repeatedly stabbed Leutner while Weier urged her on. All three girls were 12 at the time. (Rick Wood/Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel via AP, Pool)

Collins was first hired by the defense to testify about Geyser's mental competency after she was arrested for stabbing Payton Leutner while Weier urged her on. Geyser and Weier said they did it to appease the fictional character Slender Man and to keep him from killing their families.

Both of the girls were found guilty of attempted homicide by mental disease or defect and sentenced to a mental health facility. Weier was granted a conditional release. Now Geyser wants the same. This is the third time she had tried for one. In 2022, when Geyser was trying for conditional release, Collins said she made some concerns statements.

LIVE: Court proceeding for Morgan Geyser

“She told her psychiatrist that she had never had a disorder. She was faking them,” said Collins.

Collins says Geyser has had psychiatric issues before she was ever institutionalized and doesn’t believe she was faking anything. On top of that, she says only last year, Geyser again made a statement in therapy that has her worried.

“The session on Oct. 24th included included quote, ‘How do you think I was able to repeatedly stab my best friend and (beep)face, thought she was all the brains. I was pulling her along too. I didn't care, I couldn't care. I didn't know how to care,’ end of quote,” said Collins. “The rescenty of it relative to conditional release. The reference to co-defendant and herself was at least a potential red flag to me."

The defense argues Geyser is ready to be released to the community. Especially since her conditional release would happen slowly over many months, according to whatever plan is decided by the judge and the mental health institutions.

“Over that period of time if Morgan continues on the track she is on and continues doing the things here then you would say it is appropriate for her to be in the community?” asks Anthony Cotton, defense attorney.

“I anticipate or believe she will be ready for continual release in the coming months,” said Collins.

During this whole testimony, Payton Leutner’s parents have listened in over Zoom.