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17.10.09 Man "encouraged" suicide to web users PDF  | Stampa |  E-mail

da "" "Melchert-Dinkel accused of encouraging people to commit suicide"
By staff writers, October 17, 2009

A man (hospital nurse) is under investigation for allegedly encouraging people he talked to on the internet to commit suicide.

As many as five people have either committed suicide or attempted to, leading authorities to place US man William Melchert-Dinkel under police investigation, ABC News reports.

The 47-year-old had his nursing license revoked in June after police started the investigation, but has not been charged with any offences yet.

Authorities said Mr Melchert-Dinkel messaged other users in chat rooms and forums pretending to offer sympathy before offering step-by-step instructions to them on how to kill themselves.

Family members of the victims were frustrated he had not been arrested, with legal experts saying it would be difficult to convict him because he didn't physically help them die.

Mr Melchert-Dinkel allegedly used online handles such as “Li Dao,” “Cami” and “Falcon Girl” to talk to the victims.

He would enter suicide pacts with the users he chatted to, authorities said.

In a web conversation provided by the victim's mother, he allegedly gave a young woman, who was using the alias "Kajouji", sympathy before giving her technical details on how to hang herself.

One of the posts under the username “Cami” said: “I'm just trying to help you do what is best for you not me”.

Another post told “Kajouji”: “if you wanted to do hanging (sic) we could have done it together on line so it would not have been so scary for you.”

Mr Melchert-Dinkel was admitted into hospital in January 2009, with doctors noting he was “dealing with addiction to suicide Internet sites,"

He was also "feeling guilty because of past and present advice to those on the Internet of how to end their lives".