A man who survived a suicide pact with his online friend has been sentenced to four years behind bars, the Pudong New Area People’s Court said.
Wang Yang, 21, left his hometown in Jiangxi Province and went to Ningbo in Zhejiang Province to seek work. When he couldn’t find a job he spent most of his days online.
On November 24 last year, he spotted a post from a woman nicknamed Lulu who wanted someone to commit suicide with her, the court said.
After a short chat, both believed they had met their soulmates. Wang came to Shanghai to meet her.
The next day, Wang checked into a hotel near Lulu’s home and they met.
Lulu, who said she was 26, told him her parents had divorced and she had failed to find a job. She said she was so depressed that all she wanted was to end her life. Wang told the court they decided to commit suicide together the following night.
At 10pm on November 26, they burned two bags of charcoal in his hotel room after sealing the door and windows with tape. Soon the room was filled with smoke, Wang said.
After around 20 minutes, a choking Wang decided to give up the suicide attempt. “I told her that I wanted to vomit because I had carbon monoxide poisoning. But she told me that she felt fine,” Wang told the court.
He said he put out the fire, tore off the tape and turned on the ventilation. “I told her to come with me. But she just sat on the bed and remained silent. So, I left alone,” he said.
Wang spent the night at another hotel and took a bus back to Ningbo the next day. When he was on his way back, Lulu was found dead, the court said.
“When I was 14 years old, I tried to commit suicide by jumping into a river because I was obsessed with the Internet. But it was too shallow to drown myself,” Wang said.
“Recently, I lived in despair as I couldn’t find a job.”
Wang said he had just wanted to meet Lulu and he didn’t expect she would really kill herself.
“I regretted it when I felt myself choking. I thought of my family and I realized that I should live,” he said.
According to the court, Wang was guilty assisting Lulu in her suicide attempt, classified as murder under Chinese law.
He could have helped her but he left her alone, causing her to suffocate, the court said.