MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The man who created Slenderman, a spooky character popularized in online stories, video games and films, says he's "deeply saddened" by reports that his creation inspired two girls to stab another in Wisconsin.
Eric Knudsen published the first Slenderman stories and photos five years ago in an online forum.
Two 12-year-old Wisconsin girls told police they plotted to kill a friend to win Slenderman's favor and planned to go live with him in a national forest. The girls have been charged as adults with first-degree attempted homicide and face 65 years in prison.
The victim remains hospitalized.
In a statement released Wednesday, Knudsen says he's "deeply saddened by the tragedy in Wisconsin and my heart goes out to the families of those affected by this terrible act."