Take the 2-minute tour ×
Skeptics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for scientific skepticism. It's 100% free, no registration required.

This article has been going around social media being touted as news.

Husband Convicted Of Manslaughter After Dutch Oven Goes "Horribly Wrong"

According to the story:

The case for the prosecution argued for the charge of Murder, putting it to the court that, ... Mrs Flannery was ... in bed and unwinding for sleep, she was suddenly and forcibly pinned under the duvet by Mr Flannery, who sealed the edges with his weight while simultaneously releasing an enormous bolus of flatulence, which displaced all the available oxygen so that Mrs Flannery passed out nearly instantly, and was dead within 30 seconds

Is it possible to kill someone with a fart? Did this event actually happen?

share|improve this question
15  
30 seconds without oxygen to kill someone is a bit on the short side. –  Mark Henderson Aug 20 '13 at 2:13
3  
Mythbusters might be relevant here, they did an episode about flatus where they showed that this is effectively impossible. –  rjzii Aug 20 '13 at 3:14
3  
@Coomie Given the choice between a website that I've never heard of and a TV show that at least spells out how they are testing things? Mythbusters. –  rjzii Aug 20 '13 at 13:28
3  
Ronson Writer is fiction. –  user5582 Aug 20 '13 at 14:57
2  
I read the title and thought "of course someone would die if you managed to stuff them into a small cast iron pot" :) –  Kip Aug 22 '13 at 14:32

3 Answers 3

up vote 27 down vote accepted

No, this is satire. But, it's possible that it happened and hasn't been reported anywhere.

You need to look at the source of the original article. In this case, it's a site called The Ronson Writer.

They are a spoof news site along the lines of The Onion and The Shovel. Their About page says:

The Ronson Writer is an online newspaper and collective blog about the absurd state of modern popular culture. Part satire, part opinion and part vaguely-verified factual reporting, but always (we hope) at least mildly amusing.

(Emphasis mine.)

Other "news" articles include other obviously fictional stories like

A study released today reveals that the London Metropolitan Police are 7 times more likely to arrest a black cloud of smoke, such as the one that loomed over London last week, than a common white or gray smokestack from, say, a middle-class suburban house-fire.

share|improve this answer
    
also, the 2 quotes have nothing to do with each other. A Dutch Oven is utterly unrelated to flatus/farting except if you use it to cook something that makes you fart :) –  jwenting Aug 20 '13 at 4:58
11  
@jwenting urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=dutch%20oven –  user5582 Aug 20 '13 at 5:52
    
@jwenting English Language & Usage question related to "Dutch X" phrases (disclaimer: question written by me) –  Andrew Grimm Aug 20 '13 at 7:30

Didnt happen.

There is no such thing as 2nd Degree Manslaughter in the UK.

There is no such thing as a 5 year suspended sentence (3 years max).

There is no Peckham Crown Court.

The title of the judge sounds wrong.

share|improve this answer

This post does not cite any references or sources. Please help improve this post by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.

1  
Welcome to Skeptics! Please provide some references to support your claims. –  Oddthinking Dec 7 '13 at 23:57
1  
Abandoned unreferenced. Deleted. –  Oddthinking Jul 18 at 15:23

Hoax. The photo in the article is of Brisbane (Australia) Barrister Stephen Kleim taken by Liam Kidston of AAP.

share|improve this answer
    
That is useful circumstantial evidence that the story isn't a well-referenced news story, but it isn't terribly definitive that it is a hoax. –  Oddthinking Jul 18 at 15:29

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.