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Murder by Suicide

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Suicide is a big deal, and killing oneself is not a path most people choose lightly. However, these people here didn't really choose to do so by their own free will. Someone (or something) indirectly killed them by coercing them into killing themselves. Methods of forcing one to kill oneself can range from making their lives a living hell to actual mind control.

Death here should be (one of) the intended outcomes. For cases where the victim kills themselves to defy their attacker, see Dying as Yourself, I Die Free, and Better to Die than Be Killed. Not to be confused with Mutual Kill, Taking You with Me, Murder-Suicide, or Suicide Attack, which all involve (near-)simultaneously killing both oneself and others on purpose. Not really related to Suicide, Not Murder (a suicide disguised as a murder) or Never Suicide (a murder disguised as a suicide).


This is an inversion of Suicide by Assassin and Suicide by Cop, where the victim wants to die but needs someone else to kill them for them — basically Suicide by Murder. See also Leave Behind a Pistol, when they're allowed to kill themselves to escape punishment or retain their dignity. Stop Hitting Yourself, taken to the logical extreme, would be a very literal version of making someone kill themselves. May be performed by People Puppets.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Higurashi: When They Cry, Oyashiro-sama's curse (or whatever it really is) causes many characters to kill themselves throughout the various story arcs, some more than once. Methods include clawing out your own throat.
  • In the Read or Die OVA, one character attempts to broadcast a "Death Symphony" that will cause mass suicide.
  • Johan in Monster is an absolute master of this, knowing every trick to get his targets to kill themselves. Almost anyone who gets in his way or even so much as stays near him for too long becomes a victim of some scheme of his that will culminate in the victim committing suicide. He seems to prefer this method because it allows him to kill whomever he wants with as little evidence as possible. Dr. Tenma, The Protagonist, spends a significant amount of time in the series coming across Johan's victims and talking them out of suicide.

    Comic Books 
  • Several goons in Tin Tin would try to make Tintin jump off a cliff by holding him at gunpoint to Make It Look Like an Accident. He always managed to get out of it somehow.
  • In Ultimate Marvel, the Eldritch Abomination Gah Lak Tus uses a similar tactic to thin out the populations of the worlds it attacks before it arrives, and sends silver, angel-winged emissaries to mollify the populace into cults that will either commit mass-suicide or embrace their coming destruction when Gah Lak Tus finally arrives.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening, people are committing suicide in vast numbers under mysterious circumstances. The audience never gets to know the actual cause of the mass suicides, but speculation about it is sprinkled throughout the film (radiation fallout, a plague, etc.) and some have even spread their own Wild Mass Guessing entries.
  • In The Other Guys after Terry and Allen hand over all the evidence against Ershon to his lawyer, the lawyer is forced to drink a bunch of gin at gunpoint by Wesley, and then pushed onto a ledge for seeing something he wasn't meant to see. When arresting Ershon, they put him on the charge for his murder when they believe he was involved.
  • In Shooter the antagonists employ a device that, when strapped to a victims arm, uses a series of pulleys to force the victim to put a gun against their head and pull the trigger, literally physically forcing them to kill themselves (see it here).

  • The Andromeda Strain: If the titular strain itself does not kill the victim via coagulation, it can also migrate towards the brain, causing the victim to commit the most bizarre suicides (examples include one boy swallowing glue or another person willingly drowning himself in the sink).

    Live-Action TV 
  • Law & Order: Criminal Intent: Mentioned by Capt. Deakins, when Detectives Goren and Eames discover a radio shock-jock committed suicide after someone replaced his antidepressants with placebos.
    Capt. Deakins: Murder by suicide.

  • One killer in the first season of Psych tapped into a depression helpline and forced callers to commit suicide at gunpoint.

    Video Games 
  • In the Dead Space franchise, the presence of the Markers (or the Brethren Moons themselves) tends to brainwash any organic beings into a cult which eventually commits mass-suicide, has their dead flesh converted into Necromorphs, and then proceeds to kill and infect others.
  • In Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Jensen finds an augmented hacker trying to break in and steal Sarif Industries' latest top-secret military project. When Jensen tries to confront him, the man pulls a gun and puts it to his own head. His terrified expression, though, makes it clear that his body is being controlled remotely by the real hacker; all he can do is whisper "Help me!" to Jensen before he's forced to pull the trigger and end his own life.
  • In the Mass Effect universe, various forms of Mind Control may force this on a person. Most noticeably, in the first game, you run into what's left of a machine cult that impaled themselves on spikes and converted them into mindless zombie-like bio-mechanical Husks that did the machines' bidding.

    Real Life 
  • Cults that commit mass suicide might fall under this. The mass suicide of Jim Jones' People's Temple congregation in Guyana would be a Real Life example — aside from the manipulations of a very charismatic cult leader (and his warnings — possibly with some truth, as visiting U.S. Congressman Leo Ryan was recently killed by Jones' men there — that their "enemies" were about to invade the commune), there were some members who did try to sneak away rather than drink the poisoned Kool-Aid (or rather, "Flavor-Aid"), but many of these were caught and killed by Jones' goons.
  • There have been a few interesting court cases on the subject of encouraging people to take drugs with suicide as a potential side effect. While one isn't too suspect, sometimes people have have pressured others into taking dozens.


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