Dharun Ravi, the former roommate of Tyler Clementi, a gay Rutgers University student who committed suicide, was convicted this morning of hate crimes. Twenty-year-old Ravi used a webcam set up in the dorm room they shared to spy on Clementi on several occasions, which he announced over Twitter to classmates and watched from a friend’s room. Clementi — who knew about the webcam spying, requested a room change, and had complained to an RA about his roommate — eventually jumped off the George Washington Bridge.
Ravi had been charged with 15 counts (full list here) of invasion of privacy and “bias intimidation” (hate crimes), although the jury concluded that Ravi didn’t intend to intimidate his roommate initially. He was found guilty of several counts of privacy invasion, one count of bias intimidation. He was also found guilty of tampering with evidence and witnesses for trying to change text messages and tweets that showed how he had been bullying his roommate. Dharun Ravi had claimed he set up the webcams to keep an eye on his stuff when Tyler Clementi brought an older man back to the dorm to hook up with; Ravi’s lawyers also argued that he was “a kid” who didn’t know how to handle having a gay roommate.
What do you think of Dharun Ravi’s verdict?
Contact the author of this post at Jessica@TheFrisky.com. Follow me on Twitter at @JessicaWakeman.
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