He takes fatal OD as Internet pals watch

I refrained from posting this story when I knew about it a few days ago, since now it appears on a reliable source in a good format, here I go, very sad and scary :(

"I told u I was hardcore."

Those were the last coherent words Brandon Vedas, 21, typed into the computer in his Phoenix bedroom as he showed off for Internet pals watching on a Web cam by swallowing more and more prescription drugs.

Vedas died online as a crowd of virtual onlookers egged him to "eat more!" A chilling record of the Jan. 12 chat reads like an Internet version of the notorious 1964 Kew Gardens, Queens, stabbing of Kitty Genovese as her neighbors watched from their windows.

In Vedas' case, some did try to help — begging him to stop, to call 911, to get his mother from the next room. After he passed out, some tried frantically to figure out his location while others argued against getting involved.

But the technology that brought as many as a dozen chatters into the intimacy of Vedas' bedroom was unable to tell them where he was. Internet Relay Chat is anonymous, and no one in the drug users' chat group knew the last name of the young man who called himself Ripper.

Vedas was a casualty of a new epidemic: a surge in the recreational use of pharmaceuticals, even as the rate of illegal drug use holds steady or declines. The most recent survey by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says 11.1 million people used prescription drugs for fun in 2000, nearly half of whom were under 25.

News source: NY Daily News

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1 Comments

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I think "Pals" is an over-statement, because after reading the logs a few days ago I guess I should be lucky I don't have "Pals" like that.