Suicide streamed live online

November 21, 2008 12:40:40 PM PST
Some tried to talk him out of it, some egged him on and other debated his method. Now Abraham Biggs' family is trying to understand why those online viewers waited for hours to notify authorities that the South Florida college student was attempting to commit suicide before a live Internet audience.

The Broward County medical examiner's office says Biggs died Wednesday from a toxic combination of opiates and benzodiazepine, a drug used to treat insomnia and depression. The 19-year-old had started blogging about his suicide plans 12 hours before he was found dead, lying on his bed.

It's unclear how many people were watching as Biggs broadcast his suicide through his webcam. But someone notified a site moderator who pinpointed Biggs' location and called police.

Biggs family is expressing anger that neither the site nor viewers called sooner. His sister Rosalind says "nothing happened for hours." She describes her brother as friendly and outgoing but also says he struggled with bipolar disorder.

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