Cops: Wis. girls, 12, stab friend 19 times in planned attack

Last Updated Jun 2, 2014 7:30 PM EDT

WAUKESHA, Wis. - Waukesha police say two 12-year-old girls obsessed with online horror stories lured a friend into a wooded area on Saturday where one girl held her down while the other stabbed the victim 19 times.

The victim, also 12, survived the attack and police say her condition is stable.

Authorities say the two suspects had planned to kill the victim for several months before attacking her over the weekend. Police say both suspects had an interest in a website containing stories of death and horror.

The victim was stabbed in the torso, legs and arms, but was able to crawl out of the woods to a road where she was discovered by a passing bicyclist.

"Many of the stab wounds struck major organs, but incredibly and thankfully, the victim survived this brutal assault," Police Chief Russell Jack told reporters at a Monday afternoon news conference.

Authorities say the suspects were arrested several hours later. A knife believed to have been used in the stabbing has been recovered.

"Both suspects had a fascination with a fictitious character that often posted to a website that is a collection of small stories about death and horror," Jack said.

The criminal complaint refers to that online character as "Slender Man." One of the suspects told police "it was the hope that (the victim) would die and they would see Slender and know he exists," according to the complaint.

CBS affiliate WDJT reports the two suspects are being held on charges of attempted first-degree homicide. Police are reportedly recommending they be charged as adults.

The suspects, wearing handcuffs, appeared in adult court on Monday afternoon. They will remain in juvenile detention until their next hearing, set for June 11.