MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Supreme Court has reversed the convictions of a former nurse accused of encouraging two people whom he met online to kill themselves.
The court ruled Wednesday that the language in the state's assisted-suicide law is unconstitutional when it comes to "encouraging" suicides. But it found the part of the law that bans "assisting" suicide is constitutional.
It sent the case against 51-year-old William Melchert-Dinkel back to a lower court.
Melchert-Dinkel argued that the law was too broad and that his conduct was protected speech. His 360-day jail sentence had been on hold pending the outcome of the appeal.
Prosecutors say Melchert-Dinkel encouraged someone from England and someone from Canada to kill themselves.