U.K. hoax-call nurse said found hanged

Dec. 13, 2012 at 3:30 AM

LONDON, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- The nurse found dead after a prank call to the London hospital treating Kate Middleton was found hanged, the London Evening Standard reported.

Jacintha Saldanha, 46, a mother of two from Bristol, England, was discovered unconscious at her nurses apartment near the private King Edward VII hospital in central London around 9:30 a.m. Friday, three days after taking the prank call from two Australian disc jockeys pretending to be Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles.

The Evening Standard reported Saldanha had been dead for some time when she was found. Autopsy results were expected to be released Thursday.

The Metropolitan Police Service, known as Scotland Yard, would not comment on the reports, saying the post-mortem would be announced at the inquest.

Police have publicly made no connection between Saldanha's death and the prank call. Many critics say she died as a result of stress stemming from falling for the prank.

The DJs received confidential information about the health of the duchess of Cambridge, who was reported being treated for severe morning sickness.

Saldanha, the senior nurse on duty, answered the 5:30 a.m. call because the switchboard operator had not yet come on duty. She transferred the call to the nurse treating the duchess, who gave details of her condition.

Southern Cross Austereo, the company that owns radio station 2Day FM, Sydney, said Wednesday it would donate a minimum $520,000 from advertising proceeds through the end of the year, starting Thursday, to a memorial fund to benefit Saldanha's family.

The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported Thursday the Australian Communications and Media Authority opened a formal investigation into the prank call.

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