Final Exit Network Medical Director
A previous article entitled: Who are the Final Exit Network provides information in relation to this article.
The Final Exit Network and its leaders were indicted for assisting the suicide of Doreen Dunn in May 2007. Link to an article.
Melchert-Dinkel, a former nurse, was convicted of counselling suicide. He admitted to counselling people to commit suicide by internet.
Prosecutors in Minnesota charged four FEN leaders after investigating the death of Doreen Dunn.
Prosecutors say the defendants not only supported Doreen Dunn's decision to kill herself in 2007, but provided her with information and support to follow through.The Huffington Post article explains how the FEN intends to challenge the Minnesota assisted suicide law. The article states:
Final Exit members claim they do not encourage suicide, but that the act of giving information and emotional support could be interpreted as "encouraging" under a Minnesota law that makes it a felony for someone to intentionally assist, advise or encourage suicide.
Defense attorneys who appeared at a hearing Tuesday in Dakota County District Court argued that the statute is unconstitutional.
In documents filed ahead of the hearing, Final Exit Network general counsel Robert Rivas wrote that while the state may bar someone from "assisting" a suicide, it is unconstitutional for the state to ban "advising" or "encouraging" a suicide – pure speech.
Prosecutors contend the statute is narrowly worded so advocates of suicide may freely speak their minds but that those who "intentionally" assist, encourage or advise suicide are breaking the law.