News and Commentary Archive

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The Center for Law, Brain & Behavior puts the most accurate and actionable neuroscience in the hands of judges, lawyers, policymakers and journalists—people who shape the standards and practices of our legal system and affect its impact on people’s lives. We work to make the legal system more effective and more just for all those affected by the law.

Dangerous Magical Thinking

By Dahlia Lithwick | Slate | March 20, 2015

Last week Waukesha County Circuit Judge Michael Bohren ruled that two Wisconsin teenagers will have to stand trial as adults for attempted homicide. The two girls—both 12 at the time—stabbed a 12-year-old classmate 19 times last year. They said they did so to mollify a cult fan fiction character called Slender Man, who is about as creepy an imaginary figure as there can be. Attorneys for the two girls were hoping to have the charges reduced so they could be tried in juvenile court. But Judge Bohren found probable cause for prosecutors to bring first-degree attempted homicide charges, which, under Wisconsin law, must be tried in adult court. The girls will have another chance to seek to be tried as juveniles later this spring. Continue reading »