By Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition
William Melchert-Dinkel, the former Minnesota nurse had his conviction for assisting the suicide of Mark Dryborough (32) of Coventry England, upheld by the Minnesota Court of Appeal.
Melchert-Dinkel, who encouraged and counselled people to commit suicide on internet chat sites, was sentenced in September 2014 to 178 days in jail in the deaths of Dryborough and Nadia Kajouji (18) of Brampton Ontario Canada. The Minnesota Court of Appeal upheld his conviction for assisting the suicide of Dryborough but overturned his conviction in the death of Kajouji.
The Associated Press reported:
The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled that there was sufficient evidence to convict William Melchert-Dinkel, 53, of Faribault, of assisting the 2005 suicide of Mark Drybrough, 32, of Coventry, England.
It said there wasn't enough evidence to convict the ex-nurse of the lesser offense of attempting to assist the 2008 suicide of Nadia Kajouji, 18, of Brampton, Ontario.
Authorities have said that Melchert-Dinkel was obsessed with suicide and hanging, and that he sought out potential victims online, posing as a female nurse and feigning compassion.
The appeals court said Melchert-Dinkel gave Drybrough detailed instructions on how to hang himself. But it said he didn't give specific instructions to Kajouji when he recommended that she hang herself. She jumped from a bridge into a frozen river in Ottawa, where she was going to college.
Melchert-Dinkel served nearly six months in jail after his 2014 conviction and remains on 10 years of probation. While he told police he did it "for the thrill of the chase," he apologized at his sentencing and said he had repented.
The Associated Press reported that Terry Watkins, Melchert-Dinkel's lawyer, plans to appeal the conviction to the Minnesota State Supreme Court.
Links to previous articles concerning this case: