Investigation Discovery’s ‘Web of Lies: Killer Chatroom’ chronicles the death of university student Nadia Kajouji in 2008. The episode tells the story of Nadia through the eyes of her family, friends, and law enforcement officials who were involved with the case. What was first thought be an unexplained missing person’s case soon turned into something far more sinister involving internet chatrooms and a nurse seemingly encouraging people to commit suicide. Curious to know what happened? We’ve got you covered.
How Did Nadia Kajouji Die?
Nadia was a student at the Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. The 18-year-old was described as a smart and inquisitive girl who wrote poetry and wanted to become a lawyer. But towards the end of 2007, she had become increasingly depressed. On March 9, 2008, Nadia had vanished from her dormitory room. Her wallet and cellphone were still in the room, but only her ice skates, jackets, and ID card were missing.
The family was distraught, and a rigorous search for her ensued. During the investigation, the police had searched her computer and discovered that she had been talking in an internet chatroom with someone named Cami D, a 20-something female nurse. The two had been talking about having suicidal thoughts. In a disturbing revelation, Cami suggested a suicide pact, and she said that the best way to kill herself would be by hanging, pointing towards her medical experience as proof.
Cami wanted Nadia to use a webcam while she tried killing herself so that Cami could “help” her with the proper positioning of the rope. She wrote to Nadia that she just needed to purchase a nylon rope and find a place in the apartment. However, in a tragic turn of events, Nadia jumped from a bridge, and her body was found on April 20, 2008, in the Rideau River.
Who Killed Nadia Kajouji?
Although Nadia took her own life, there was a sinister scheme that many believe prompted her to take this step. In March 2008, all the way over in the United States, the Minnesota Police received an email from a woman named Celia Blay who lived in the United Kingdom. She mentioned in the email that there was a person who was preying on vulnerable people on chatrooms on the internet and was pushing them to kill themselves. Celia Blay was in her 60s and was an anti-suicide activist. A suicidal teenage friend of hers had told her about a suicide pact she entered online with a nurse named Li Dao.
Back then, Celia convinced her friend not to kill herself, but she wanted to find out more about Li Dao. When she talked to other people from groups frequented by Li Dao, she discovered that other screen names like Falcon Girl and Cami D were also used to enter into suicide pacts with them. This person would ask them to hang themselves in front of webcams in order to watch them die, but she would never go through with it.
Celia then decided to run a sting operation with a friend who was reportedly also suicidal to find out who this person was. Through that, they obtained information that was then sent to Minnesota police. The IP address was then traced to the house of William Melchert-Dinkel, a nurse who lived in Faribault, Minnesota. It turned out that he was the person behind Cami D, Falcon Girl, and Li Dao.
More information came to light in the form of Elaine, a British mother, who had lost her 32-year-old son to suicide in 2005. The family had discovered his online activity after Mark’s death, where he had made a suicide pact with Li Dao. The Minnesota Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force also started to look into William. Upon questioning, William had admitted to the investigators that he had talked to about 20 people on chatrooms online regarding suicides, made pacts with about 10 of them, and he believed that 5 of them killed themselves.
There were more shocking revelations to come. He also told the police that he had asked people to watch their suicides over webcams. In addition, he admitted that he did it for the “thrill of the chase.” So, William, then a 47-year-old married man with two teenage daughters, was charged with encouraging and assisting suicide in 2010. This sentence was later overturned. However, he was eventually convicted and sentenced in 2014.
Where is William Melchert-Dinkel Now?
William was convicted in 2011, but owing to “the difference between encouraging or advising in a suicide and assisting in it,” the decision was reversed and remanded in March 2014 by the Minnesota Supreme Court. Furthermore, the court felt that the statute under which William was prosecuted was “unconstitutional in part.” However, later that year, he was convicted of assisting the suicide of Mark and attempting to assist the suicide of Nadia.
He was sentenced to 178 days in jail. While he received a five-year sentence, he didn’t have to serve it if he complied with the conditions of his probation. William apologized for his actions in court. He was released from prison in February 2015 after receiving credit for time served. Since his release, he seems to have kept his life private, and not much is known about his current whereabouts. From what we can tell, he may still reside in Minnesota.