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?

  • 19
    30 seconds without oxygen to kill someone is a bit on the short side. Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 2:13
  • 4
    Mythbusters might be relevant here, they did an episode about flatus where they showed that this is effectively impossible.
    – rjzii
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 3:14
  • 4
    @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
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 13:28
  • 4
    Ronson Writer is fiction.
    – user5582
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 14:57
  • 7
    I read the title and thought "of course someone would die if you managed to stuff them into a small cast iron pot" :)
    – Kip
    Commented Aug 22, 2013 at 14:32

2 Answers 2


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.

  • 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
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 4:58
  • 11
    @jwenting urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=dutch%20oven
    – user5582
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 5:52
  • @jwenting English Language & Usage question related to "Dutch X" phrases (disclaimer: question written by me)
    – Golden Cuy
    Commented Aug 20, 2013 at 7:30

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

  • 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
    Commented Jul 18, 2014 at 15:29

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