A fictional horror character known as Slenderman that two Wisconsin girls say motivated them to stab a friend has been popularized on a website that publishes user-generated horror stories.
The Slenderman, also known as Slender Man, is a mythical male adult figure said to wear a dark suit and have no face. His arms and legs are longer than normal and he can make them longer at will, according to postings on the creepypasta.wikia.com website.
Slenderman also has four to eight tentacles on his back that he can extend or contract at will, according to the site. He is malevolent and appears to target children, often for kidnapping, according to the site. When people are in his presence, they are helpless to resist the urge to walk into his long arms, according to creepypasta.wikia.com.
Most references to Slenderman indicate that he is fictional and the creepypasta site reports he was likely created on an online horror forum, but there are postings on the creepypasta site that indicate the earliest references to him appeared in caves in Brazil and hieroglyphs in Egypt. The site also claims there are people who say they have seen Slenderman, walking at night or peering into windows.
Two 12-year-old girls charged with attempted homicide in the stabbing of their friend told authorities that Slenderman required them to perform the crime in order to curry favor with him. The girls are being held in a juvenile detention center.