Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition
Prosecutors argued Friday that a former nurse should be convicted of assisting suicide for sending emails and other online communications in which he urged two people in Canada and Britain to kill themselves and gave them information on how to do it.
Melchert-Dinkel, 52, was back in court more than three years after he was convicted of encouraging suicides in the deaths of Nadia Kajouji, 18, of Brampton, ON., in 2008 and Mark Drybrough, 32, of Coventry, England, in 2005.
Evidence at that trial showed Melchert-Dinkel was obsessed with suicide and sought out depressed people online, posing as a suicidal female nurse, faking compassion and offering detailed instructions on how they could kill themselves. Police said he told them he did it for “the thrill of the chase,” and allegedly wanted to watch his targets die via a computer webcam.
In a hearing Friday, Assistant Rice County Attorney Terence Swihart said the state Supreme Court had defined “assist” as providing a person with what they need to die by suicide.
According to court documents, he acknowledged participating in online chats about suicide with up to 20 people and entering into fake suicide pacts with about 10, five of whom he believed killed themselves.
His online pseudonyms included “Falcon Girl” and “Cami D.”
“We are not condoning his actions and there is no attempt to suggest that anything he did is anything but salacious, immoral or depraved. But we believe this it was protected by the first amendment of the constitution.”Melchert-Dinkel encouraged people at their most vulnerable time to commit suicide. He acted like a friend using a false name and he gave them instructions for suicide while encouraging them to do the act on front of a webcam. Melchert-Dinkel should be prosecuted.
Links to articles related to this story.