Family: 12-year-old stabbing victim ‘strong, brave girl’

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(CNN) — A 12-year-old Wisconsin girl who police say was stabbed 19 times by two other girls is “a strong, brave girl” whose verve and sparkle “will be back again brighter than ever because of the amazing support she has worldwide,” her family said in a statement Friday.

“We … are overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from the surrounding community, across the country, and even overseas,” the family said in the statement that was posted at the site where their daughter was found. “Our strong, brave girl loves school and her teachers. She is looking forward to the summer, but has voiced that she will miss attending her classes even more.”

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Authorities said one girl held the victim down while another stabbed her in a Waukesha park Saturday morning, allegedly so that the attackers could impress a fictitious, ghoulish Internet character called Slenderman. A bicyclist found the wounded girl alive. She has since been released from a hospital, her parents said in a statement Friday.

The girls allegedly left the victim to crawl to her own rescue. The three girls were friends.

“Her favorite class, even at the young age of 12, is French,” the victim’s family said. “She practices it at home and teases her little brother by saying words he cannot understand. She has a very close knit family with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins who are very active in her life.”

An animal lover whose two cats are “her pride and joy,” the victim planned to spend much of the summer volunteering at the Waukesha County Humane Society, the statement said.

“This past fall she organized a food drive to benefit the animals at the shelter,” the statement said. “She enjoys listening to music and torments her parents, just as any other pre-teen, with loud acoustical versions of her favorite Taylor Swift and Katy Perry songs.”

“She is a budding fashionista and enjoys reading magazines about the latest styles,” the family statement said. “She has a love for life and the dramatic sparkle of any typical 12 year old girl in her eye. Although the sparkle has dimmed for now, we know that it will be back again brighter than ever because of the amazing support she has worldwide.”

The suspects, Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier, were arrested hours after the victim was discovered, according to a criminal complaint. They have been charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide, according to court documents filed Monday.

The two, both 12, are being charged as adults, and bail is set at $500,000 for each, Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel said.

Her alleged attackers were trying to impress a certain “Slenderman,” according to a criminal complaint. One of the girls encountered the name on a website known as Creepypasta Wiki.

Slenderman is a fictional character and Internet meme that often appears in horror stories, videos and images. One of the suspects told police that Slenderman is the site’s supposed leader, and to climb into his realm, a user must kill someone.

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