Website blamed for student suicide

22-year-old found hanged in room


A Coroner has condemmed an online suicide guide after a medical student hanged himself following directions on the site. Liverpool Coroner Andre Rebello asked Yahoo! to pull the plug on the Holland-based site, but the company refused.

Arwel Davies, 22, was found hanging from a hook on his bedroom door, the Coroners court heard. Police were called to the scene by Davies' friend, Andrew Baker, who became concerned when he couldn't reach Davies by mobile phone. He discovered the body after breaking into Davies' bedroom.

Authorities suspect messages posted on the site encouraged Davies to end his life. The police found a nine-page print-out from the site, detailing various methods of committing suicide, along with notes on preparing for death, The Sun reports.

Rebello said Davies had become obsessed with suicide and self-harm. He had been treated for depression after a failed suicide attempt earlier in the year. He had tried to overdose on paracetamol. The Coroner told the court: "It is the height of irresponsibility to publish a site which could encourage someone to be tipped over the edge. The internet is there to educate and improve life, not destroy it."

This is far from the first time the internet has been implicated in a suicide. In October this year, seven young Japanese men and women were found dead in a car, apparently as the result of an internet suicide pact. ®

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