AIDS/HIV | News | Ray Gosling

Police Arrest UK Journalist Who Said He Killed AIDS-Suffering Lover

Police have arrested BBC broadcaster Ray Gosling after he admitted in a documentary on Monday night that he had smothered a former lover who was suffering from AIDS.

Said a police spokeswomanBbc  "Nottinghamshire police have this morning arrested a 70-year-old Nottingham man on suspicion of murder following comments on the BBC's ‘Inside Out' programme on Monday evening."

The BBC reports: "Mr Gosling has previously said he would not name his lover or say when the incident took place...Mr Gosling said he was aware of the possible consequences and had no regrets. He said: "It's a terrible situation. I loved him to bits. 'We had a pact - he said if the pain gets bad and if nothing can be done, don't let him linger on. I don't think it's a crime.' Assisted suicide remains a criminal offence, but interim guidelines issued in September by the director of public prosecutions set out the factors which weigh in favour of and against prosecution."

If you missed Gosling's confession, watch it here.

The confession has inspired a debate over euthanasia in the UK:

Sarah Wootton, chief executive of Dignity in Dying, said: 'This case yet again demonstrates that this is a real and present problem, which can affect us all. 'The law is out of step with what society needs and wants. 'Crucially, Ray Gosling's loved one was terminally ill and clearly asked for help to die when he was suffering unbearably at the end of his life. 'This illustrates a need for formal assisted dying legislation to help those who want choice at the end of life, as well as protect people who may be vulnerable to coercion.'

Aiding or abetting another person's death is illegal in England and Wales under the 1961 Suicide Act, and is punishable by up to 14 years in jail.

A spokesman for Care Not Killing said: 'It is somewhat bizarre and highly irresponsible that the BBC, which has known about this case for over two months, has not referred the matter to the police but instead made the decision to make it international news just before the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) releases his assisted suicide prosecution guidelines.

'This will fuel concerns that the BBC is not covering this issue in an even-handed manner and may even be trying to put pressure on both the DPP and Parliament by giving hugely disproportionate coverage to emotive cases in which the facts are selectively presented to an uninformed audience.'

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Comments

  1. Here we go.

    Posted by: Sean | Feb 17, 2010 8:08:06 AM


  2. Not unlike abortion, assisted suicide is another one of those "HOT" button issues that the religious zealots try to manipulate their beliefs into everyone's private and personal lives. It's also something that I am a fervent believer of. In 1992, I had a very close friend who was terminally ill with complications from AIDS and moved from Texas to California where he took his life with the help of his partner. After having seen my brother die from the very same thing in 1986, I can fully appreciate why he did that.

    I am certain the Pope will now try to inject his third world beliefs into this situation prior to his UK arrival in September. As a former Catholic, I just wish organized religion would stay out of my bedroom, my life and my relationship. Do that and I'll do the same for you.

    Posted by: Keith | Feb 17, 2010 8:15:52 AM


  3. I have no intention of ever "suffering unbearably".

    ...and I totally agree with KEITH. Keep religions OUT of limiting my options!

    Posted by: JAMES in Toronto | Feb 17, 2010 9:18:52 AM


  4. How long will be be before Republicans claim that health care reform would lead to doctors putting pillows over people with AIDS and the terminally ill? They will portray it as another example of how horrible it is to live in "socialist" Europe, because they believe that the only acceptable deaths are for those who can't afford to pay for their care. To them it's the natural order of things.

    Posted by: Michael J | Feb 17, 2010 11:00:50 AM


  5. "Never let the truth stand in the way of a good story." I think I heard that in a writing class. He may have embellished his recollection to make TV drama.

    I am suspicious because they had morphine back then, it is plentiful and cheap. "Snowing" a patient is what is commonly done, not suffocating with a pillow.

    He should just say that he got carried away with his story telling. He is after all the only witness.

    Posted by: jesse james | Feb 17, 2010 12:00:12 PM


  6. What is "snowing" a patient?

    Posted by: Christopher | Feb 17, 2010 1:18:20 PM


  7. One of my favorite writers, Terry Pratchett has been openly addressing the issues of "choice" regarding death. He "came out" as having Alheimer's and how he would want to "jump before I'm pushed"--i.e., when he is no longer mentally "here," he would prefer to be "gone" physically as well. Here's one of his quotes in an article about people from the UK and other countries going to Switzerland which legally allows assisted suicides--the majority support this:

    "From personal experience, I believe the recent poll reflects the views of the people in this country. They don't dread death; it's what happens beforehand that worries them.
    Life is easy and cheap to make. But the things we add to it, such as pride, self-respect and human dignity, are worthy of preservation, too, and these can be lost in a fetish for life at any cost.
    I believe that if the burden gets too great, those who wish to should be allowed to be shown the door.
    In my case, in the fullness of time, I hope it will be the one to the garden under an English sky. Or, if wet, the library."


    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1203622/Ill-die-endgame-says-Terry-Pratchett-law-allow-assisted-suicides-UK.html#ixzz0fpHGeFHf

    Posted by: Eagledancer | Feb 17, 2010 3:16:47 PM


  8. Christopher: Snowing a patient is giving him an overdose of morphine on purpose.

    Posted by: jesse james | Feb 18, 2010 7:54:36 AM


  9. Gosling knew the admission was risky when he made his confession public. He was betting on the 'victim' not being identified, so long as he withheld his identity, and as long as he can't be linked to the 'crime', he can't be convicted. So we can only hope that he wins his bet.

    I don't know that there can ever be appropriate legislation for the Right To Die issue. Personally, I feel suicide is a decision everyone has the right to make. By extension, Assisted Suicide is equally permissible. But how do you write a law that allows suicide, but prevents Murder disguised as Assisted Suicide? That's the larger question.

    I hope Gosling is cleared of the charges. I feel he did the right thing for his lover. Even if he was a bit foolish for confessing it publicly.

    Posted by: Jay Croce | May 3, 2010 2:09:26 AM


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