And then again, the scapegoating families. These families had far more power to prevent the suicides by obtaining adequate treatment for their loved ones, than the defendant had to induce the suicide by advice on making knots.
Drybrough hanged himself on July 27, 2005. His sister reported going to his home and finding a suicide note, then finding him hanging from a rope tied to a ladder.
Documents say Melchert-Dinkel told investigators he advised Drybrough to use a "slip knot" and place the knot behind his left ear to compress the left and right carotid arteries. Computer evidence showed that Melchert-Dinkel also instructed Drybrough on how to hang himself from a low object.
The victim's mother, Elaine Drybrough, told a British newspaper last month that Melchert-Dinkel "appointed himself Mark's executioner. He whispered in his ear each time he logged on to the computer. Because of his medical experience, he knew exactly ... the buttons he needed to push."
Mark Kajouji, who now serves as an ambassador for Your Life Counts, a national suicide prevention program in Canada, said he can't say for sure whether his sister would still be alive if not for Melchert-Dinkel. But he wonders.
"Obviously, he pushed her to the brink," he said. "He could have been the guy who said, 'Don't do it.' But instead he decided to prey on it.""