Did a prank go too far?
A nurse who unsuspectingly transferred a prank call from Australian hosts posing as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles has been found dead in what is reportedly a suicide. The nurse has been identified as Jacintha Saldanha.
Saldanha was the first to answer the call on Tuesday as hosts Mel Greig and Michael Christian tried to get information on expectant mother Kate Middleton, who was admitted into the King Edward VII Hospital after suffering from acute morning sickness. Saldanha’s first responses along with those of a second nurse were recorded and broadcast on air.
According to a statement by hospital chairman Lord Glenarthur, he said: “This is a tragic event. Jacintha was a first-class nurse who cared diligently for hundreds of patients during her time with us. She will be greatly missed.”
Prince William and Kate have also issued a statement, expressing how deeply saddened they are to learn of the death.
“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.”
While the Australian Communications and Media Authority are still investigating the case, the radio hosts have since issued apologies and have decided not to return to their radio show until further notice.
“Just on our royal prank call… we were very surprised that our call was put through, we thought we’d be hung up on as soon as they heard our terrible accents,” Christian wrote on his Twitter account. “We’re very sorry if we’ve caused any issues and we’re glad to hear that Kate is doing well.”