Police drop investigation into Dignitas suicide case

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Police have announced that they will not carry out further investigations into the case of Mrs Helen Cowie, the Glasgow mother who last month admitted on BBC Radio Scotland’s Call Kaye show that she had helped her son travel to a Dignitas clinic in Switzerland where he ended his own life.

Mrs Cowie’s son Robert had been left paralysed from the neck down after a swimming accident three years ago.

Following the accident, Mr Cowie’s quality of life was very poor, and so he took the decision to end his own life at a Dignitas clinic in Zurich.  Mrs Cowie and other members of the family tried to persuade him to change his mind.  Mrs Cowie said: “We asked him not to do it, but it was his decision.”

Being severely disabled, Mr Cowie was only able to make the trip to Switzerland with the assistance of family members.

Speaking to the BBC, Mrs Cowie said: “I would rather have been able to do it in this country.  That really upsets me that I had to take my son to Switzerland, and I had to leave his body there and wait for the ashes to come back.

“It should be allowed here, but not willy-nilly to everybody.  It should be investigated hard because you have to be in a sane mind to have it done.”

Strathclyde Police said they had now had time to look into the circumstances of Mr Cowie’s death, and had decided it would not be appropriate to launch an investigation.