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Dublin: 2°C Sunday 5 December 2021

Sitdown Sunday: Why did two 12-year-olds try to kill because of the 'Slender Man'?

The very best of the week’s writing from around the web.

IT’S A DAY of rest, and you may be in the mood for a quiet corner and a comfy chair.

We’ve hand-picked the week’s best reads for you to savour.

1. What happened to Dammion Heard?

Young athlete Dammion Heard was found hanging from a tree last April. But what happened to this “happy” guy? A reporter investigates, using police records, private investigator interviews and more.

(CBS News, approx 10 mins reading time per part)

Police investigated and ruled it a suicide. But Gary has never believed his son killed himself. And a CBS News/Crimesider investigation reveals many pieces of circumstantial evidence that suggest the possibility of something more sinister. The most glaring is the fact that police determined Dammion’s car, a black 2004 Saturn SUV found near the scene of his death, had no identifiable fingerprints at all inside it. And yet, just hours before Dammion disappeared, he drove a carload of wrestlers to a fundraiser.

2. Searching for Sugar Daddy 

shutterstock_259980863 Source: Shutterstock/tetxu

This controversial article looks at the phenomenon of so-called ‘sugar daddies’. What do you make of what the author has to say?

(GQ, approx 23 mins reading time)

Anyway, she asked for money up front, and he sent her $800. She didn’t show to the meet, and that’s the last time Thurston Von Moneybags ever got hustled again. Now he meets the girls for lunch before he offers them an ahem arrangement, and he is very clear. He doesn’t give them money until their second date, when they’re in the bedroom, which sometimes feels bad

3. The great Grace Jones

Trevor Horn charity concert - Grace Jones Source: EMPICS Sports Photo Agency

A history of Grace Jones and her music, charting her success, the importance of her gay and queer fans, and what makes her so uniquely powerful.

(Pitchfork, approx 23 mins reading time)

That night, Grace Jones sang “I Need a Man” just like a man might—tough and lusty, she was a woman who was not just singing to them, but also forthem, as them. She was as queer as a relatively straight person could get. Her image celebrated blackness and subverted gender norms; she presented something we had never seen before in pop performance—a woman who was lithe, sexy, and hyperfeminine while also exuding a ribald, butch swagger.

4. The survivors

HURRICANES SPORTS The Louisiana superdome Source: Associated Press

10 years after Hurricane Katrina, ESPN journeys to New Orleans to meet the survivors left behind.

(ESPN, approx 132 mins reading time)

“For those of us who were here, it was a deeply emotional, deeply personal, painful experience,” he says. “I mean, it was hard. But we were in a near-death environment, so we didn’t really have time to process it. We literally had to get out of harm’s way so that we could stay alive. Then we immediately had to start rebuilding. And I’m not sure that a lot of us have had a chance to process it.”

5. Murder and the Slender Man

Slender_in_background Source: Creepy Pasta

Anissa Weier and Morgan Geyser were 12 when they decided to kill their friend – and they said it was because of the Slender Man. But did they really believe he existed? And if they didn’t, why did they stab a young girl?

(NY Mag, approx 52 mins reading time)

…during their interviews with police that Saturday, Anissa Weier and Morgan Geyser, who at the time were both 12 years old, said they were trying to kill Payton Leutner to please a mythical internet horror creature named Slender Man — a tall, thin, faceless man in a suit who has tentacles growing out of his back and preys on children.

6. The Christian cult 

enhanced-mid-27748-1440713518-6 Source: Google Maps/Buzzfeed

Jaime Prater grew up in the Jesus People USA hippy cult. But then he made a documentary exposing their dark side.

(Buzzfeed, approx 38 mins reading time)

“We felt like we were part of this big movement,” says Micki Johnson, who joined JPUSA at the age of 18. “The free love, the drugs, it had left us disillusioned, and we weren’t going to find what we were looking for in the traditional church. Here was this thing that talked about the love of Jesus, but you didn’t have to cut your hair or shave your beard. You could come as you are.”


American Football - NFL - Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Chicago Bears - Wembley Stadium Source: Empics Sports Photography Ltd.

Back in 2011, Sports Illustrated wrote about a small mill town in Western Philadelphia, where there is a “kind of war” but football brings people together.

(Sports Illustrated, approx 41 mins reading time)

“I had never seen a community change so dramatically in a negative sense,” Yannessa says of Aliquippa. “It was all racism, white flight. They wouldn’t even let the kids play nighttime football. You’re getting your ass kicked, and by the third quarter you’re playing in front of 18 people? It was ugly.”

The Sports Pages – the best sports writing collected every week by TheScore.ie>

More: The best reads from every previous Sitdown Sunday >

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