Inquest: Nurse in British royal hoax found hanging

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 13, 2012 at 10:47 pm •  Published: December 13, 2012
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LONDON (AP) — A nurse was found hanging in her room three days after she had been duped by a hoax call from Australian DJs about the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge, a U.K. inquest was told. The case is being treated as an apparent suicide.

Nurse Jacintha Saldanha was discovered hanging by a scarf from a wardrobe in her nurses' quarters Dec. 7 by a colleague and a member of security staff at London's King Edward VII Hospital, coroner's officer Lynda Martindill said Thursday.

Martindill said an attempt to revive Saldanha failed.

Police detective chief inspector James Harman said Saldanha, 46, also had injuries to her wrists.

He told the inquest at Westminster Coroner's Court that two notes were found at the scene and another was found among Saldanha's belongings. He said there were no suspicious circumstances, meaning nobody else was involved in Saldanha's death.

Harman said police were examining the notes, interviewing the nurse's friends, family and colleagues and looking at emails and phone calls to establish what led to her death.

He also said detectives would be contacting police in the Australian state of New South Wales to collect "relevant evidence."

Saldanha answered the phone last week when two Australian disc jockeys called seeking information about the former Kate Middleton, who was being treated for severe morning sickness. The DJs impersonated Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, and Saldanha was tricked into transferring the call to another nurse, who revealed private details about the duchess' condition.

The DJs, 2DayFM's Mel Greig and Michael Christian, apologized for the prank in emotional interviews on Australian television, saying they never expected their call would be put through. The show was taken off the air and the DJs have been suspended.

New South Wales state police said Friday that they were investigating a letter sent to the station that made several threats against the DJs. Police declined to release details of the letter.



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