Saturday, December 8, 2012

Tragedy: Kate Middleton and Prince William "Deeply Saddened" Over The Death of Hospital Nurse Who Was The Victim of Radio Prank Call - Suicide Suspected

The nurse who unwittingly transferred a prank call from Australian radio hosts impersonating Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles has been found dead. She has been identified as Jacintha Saldanha the nurse who was the victim of a prank by an Australian radio station, which called King Edward VII hospital on Wednesday pretending to be the Queen of England (with a terrible accent) and asking to speak to Kate.

According to law enforcement, the woman was found dead at an address near King Edward VII hospital, where she worked, around 9:30 AM yesterday morning.

Paramedics were dispatched to the scene but were unable to revive her. Scotland Yard is treating the death as a possible suicide.

Law enforcement sources tell us ... cops are NOT planning on conducting a criminal investigation into the death at this point ... and believe there was no foul play.

We're told a post-mortem examination (autopsy) is currently being scheduled and is expected to be conducted in the next few days.

"The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Jacintha Saldanha," read a statement from a St. James's Palace spokesman. "Their Royal Highnesses were looked after so wonderfully well at all times by everybody at King Edward VII Hospital, and their thoughts and prayers are with Jacintha Saldanha's family, friends and colleagues at this very sad time."

A U.K. Metropolitan Police spokeswoman tells E! News that police were called at approximately 9:35 a.m. (GMT) on Friday to a report of a woman found unconscious at an address in central London. London Ambulance Service attended and the woman was pronounced dead at the scene. Inquiries continue to establish the circumstances of the incident. Police would not confirm if the death is being ruled a suicide or not.

"It is with very deep sadness we confirm the tragic death of a member of our nursing staff, Jacintha Saldanha," read a statement from a King Edward VII spokesperson. "Jacintha was an excellent nurse and well-respected and popular with all of her colleagues. We can confirm that Jacintha was recently the victim of a hoax call to the hospital. The hospital had been supporting her throughout this difficult time."

On Tuesday, Saldanha received the prank call from Mel Greig and Michael Christian, on-air personalities from Australian radio station 2Day, and subsequently transferred the call to another nurse who provided an update on the Duchess of Cambridge, who at the time was being treated at King Edward VII Hospital for hyperemesis gravidarum, an acute form of morning sickness.

The radio station later issued an apology after the prank, stating, "We thought we'd be hung up on as soon as they heard our terrible accents. We're very sorry if we've caused any issues for Kate or the nurse. It was honestly meant as fun and hope the nurse and Kate are OK."

The duchess was admitted to the hospital Monday and was discharged on Thursday with Prince William by her side.

Meanwhile, the two Australian DJs behind the Kate Middleton hospital prank that may have led to the suicide of a nurse have decided to REMOVE themselves from the airwaves.

Southern Cross Austereo, the company that owns the station, has released a statement ... saying, "SCA and 2Day FM are deeply saddened by the tragic news of the death of nurse Jacintha Saldanha from King Edward VII’s Hospital."

SCA says the CEO has spoken with both of the DJs ... who are both "deeply shocked" over the tragedy.
The company adds, "SCA and the hosts have decided that they will not return to their radio show until further notice out of respect for what can only be described as a tragedy."

Interesting that SCA did NOT pull the DJs off the air immediately following the prank ... but instead waited until the backlash after Saldanha's suicide.

1 comment:

  1. It is so common today that people feel no shame or embarrassment for their actions primarily media people (either print, tv, or radio). Anyone with any sense of pride in their work would take this as a serious breach of work ethics or protocol. I can see the nurse's feeling of disrespect for patient confidentiality once the prank came to light. The "pranksters" need to have a consequence of more than just feeling bad. They were ultimately responsible for the nurse's feelings of failure in her duties.


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