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Judge Won’t Toss Aiding Suicide Case

Court ActionMINNEAPOLIS (AP) – A judge in southern Minnesota has denied another request to dismiss the case of a former nurse accused of going online and encouraging two people to kill themselves.

William Melchert-Dinkel of Faribault faces two counts of aiding suicide for allegedly advising and encouraging an English man and a Canadian woman to commit suicide.

He has pleaded not guilty. His attorney asked that the case be dismissed, arguing that Minnesota doesn’t have jurisdiction because the deaths happened elsewhere.

Rice County District Court Judge Thomas Neuville disagrees. In an order filed Friday, he says a person can be convicted in Minnesota if a crime occurs “in part” within the state.

Neuville says since the electronic communications allegedly came from Rice County, the case can be tried there.

Trial is set for April.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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