After one of two nurses, that were the center of a radio prank over the Kate Middleton hospital stay last week, committed suicide, the Australian DJ’s may face a probe.
While Middleton was in the hospital for acute morning sickness, Australian DJ’s, Mel Greig and Michael Christian called the London Hospital pretending to be Queen Elisabeth and Prince Charles seeking to get information on how Kate was doing.
The call got transferred to Kate’s room by, Jacintha Saldanha, who believed she was talking to the real Queen. The call to the room was received in Kate’s room by the head nurse, who gave out some personal medical information on the air waves.
After the backlash surrounding the hoax, Saldanha apparently feeling shame, decided to take her own life and her body was found a couple days later.
As they have gone into hiding due to receiving death threats, the DJ’s morning radio show has since been canceled, and the British authorities have contacted Australian authorities to begin a probe into the prank.
Rhys Holleran, CEO of Southern Cross Austereo, the parent company of Sydney’s 2Day FM radio station, defends the DJ’s by saying no laws were broken, and that the prank had been cleared by station lawyers. Holleran said the DJs followed the company’s procedures before broadcasting the call.
“I think the more important question here is that we’re very confident that we haven’t done anything illegal. Our main concern at this point in time is what has happened is incredibly tragic and we’re deeply saddened and we’re incredibly affected by that,” Holleran said Saturday.
Saldanha came to England from India nine years ago, with her husband and two children who lived 100 miles away from the King Edward VII private hospital. While working her shifts she would sleep in a residence for the nurses. On Facebook, her 14-year-old daughter wrote this weekend, simply: “I miss you, I loveeee you.”
A probe could look into whether the nurses gave permission to have their conversations air on the radio which would be a violation of the law.
Greig and Christian are said to be in a fragile emotional state since Saldanha was found dead on Friday. Station executives said the hosts are seeking the help of counselors. “These people aren’t machines, they’re human beings,” Holleran told reporters on Saturday. “We’re all affected by this.”