Page last updated at 15:08 GMT, Friday, 19 June 2009 16:08 UK

Suicidal man saved by internet

A suicidal man in Oxfordshire was saved by police after a tip-off from a woman 10,000 miles away in Australia.

The 23-year-old man from Wantage posted messages in an internet chat room with the words: "I will kill myself in 15 minutes".

The woman spoke to the man over the phone. She contacted a friend in Cambridge who managed to discover the man's postcode.

Police found the man with a cord around his neck, which was cut by an officer.

'Very depressed'

The Australian woman had made contact with the man in a chat room but became alarmed when he left messages saying he would take his own life.

By exchanging messages she managed to get his phone number and the pair had a brief conversation before the man hung up.

The woman then called a friend in Cambridge.

The friend, who wanted to be known only as Andy, said: "I rang him and spoke to him. He was very depressed and I didn't really know what to do.

"While I was on the phone to the police, he texted me his postcode. I then passed that to Cambridgeshire Police."

'Excellent example'

Police have praised Andy's quick thinking following the incident on the 9 June.

Chief Inspector Andy Boyd, the area commander for Wantage, said: "This is an excellent example of how modern technology can and does assist the police in reducing crime and saving peoples' lives."

The incident is almost identical to an attempted suicide in April.

A 16-year-old boy from Oxford was saved after he told a friend in the USA that he planned to take his own life.

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