WhatsApp ‘suicide’ game: Disturbing ‘Momo’ craze claims lives of 2 Colombian children
A 12-year-old girl and a 16-year-old boy reportedly killed themselves in the municipality of Barbosa, in Santander, after playing ‘Momo’ – the name of the WhatsApp game based on a scary fictional character that gives deadly dares and instructions.
The ‘Momo’ game features an eerie figure resembling a bird-like woman and sends challenges, threats and disturbing images to players, reportedly with a final challenge that demands participants kill themselves or be cursed with an evil spell.
Police reportedly seized the phones of the pair and found messages linked to the game. It is thought the latest two victims knew each other, according to local media, with the 16-year-old boy reportedly passing on the game to the 12-year-old girl before he killed himself.
⚠️Si esperas que #Momo salga de tu #smartphone como si de la peor "peli" de terror se tratase... Buuuu😱😱 ¡No te lo creas!— Policía Nacional (@policia) July 18, 2018
Olvídate de virales absurdos que se ponen de moda en @WhatsApp o #RRSS#PasaDeChorradas#SeListohttps://t.co/Ubh57LRMTypic.twitter.com/ObEzcnLvTv
‘Momo’ is based on the image of a sculpture from Japan. It’s not known, however, who is behind the spread of the disturbing game as several of the phone numbers involved have been traced to Colombia and Mexico.
The viral fad is also thought to be linked to the death of a 12-year-old girl in Argentina in July. The spread of the challenge across South America prompted Spanish and Mexican police to issue warnings to young people about the dangers of participating in the “absurd” game.