Photo by Emmanual Dunand/AFP/Getty Images.
Thursday, March 22: Ex-Rutgers student Dharun Ravi gave his first media interview since being convicted last week of using a webcam to spy on his college roommate kissing another man, telling the New Jersey Star-Ledger in an article published Thursday that he doesn't regret his decision to turn down a plea bargain.
"I’m never going to regret not taking the plea," Ravi told the paper. "If I took the plea, I would have had to testify that I did what I did to intimidate Tyler and that would be a lie. I won’t ever get up there and tell the world I hated Tyler because he was gay, or tell the world I was trying to hurt or intimidate him because it’s not true."
Ravi, who did not testify at his trial, was found guilty of hate crime, invasion of privacy and other related charges. Prior to the trial, he was reportedly offered a deal that would have kept him out of jail. Instead, he now faces a maximum sentence of 10 years.
You can read the full interview here.
Monday, March 19: An alternate juror says he disagrees with the verdict of his fellow jurors in the case of former Rutgers freshman Dharun Ravi, who was found guilty on Friday of hate crime and invasion of privacy for using a webcam to spy on his former roommate, who later committed suicide.
The jury's verdict was unanimous. But alternate juror James Downey (who heard all the testimony but did not participate in the deliberations) told The Record that he did not believe Ravi was guilty of an anti-gay bias when he spied on fellow freshman and roommate Tyler Clementi kissing another man.
"The rest of the charges I’m kind of up in the air about, but as far as the bias charges, there’s no way I would have come back guilty on any of them," he told the New Jersey paper. The full interview is here.
Friday, March 16: A New Jersey jury on Friday found former Rutgers freshman Dharun Ravi guilty of hate crime and invasion of privacy for using a webcam to spy on his college roommate kissing another man. Three days after the incident, the roommate jumped to his death.
Ravi will be sentenced on May 21. He faces up to 10 years in jail and possible deportation back to India, where the 20-year-old was born before moving to the U.S. as a young boy, the Associated Press reports.
Ravi used Twitter and a webcam in 2010 to spy on his roommate's encounter with a male friend. Three days later, the roommate, fellow freshman Tyler Clementi, committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge, generating front-page headlines and sparking a national conversation about cyber-bullying.
Ravi's trial generated international headlines and was broadcast live across the country and in India. Throughout the proceedings, prosecutors and the defense fought over whether Ravi's actions were simply those of an immature college student or something criminally worse.
Defense lawyers portrayed Ravi's actions—which included public tweets like "Found out my roommate is gay"—as the mark of an ignorant teenager, not a hateful homophobe. Prosecutors, meanwhile, argued that Ravi's online actions were deliberate, malicious and intended to "deprive [Clemtenti] of his dignity."
Slate's Emily Bazelon has been following the case; you can read her take here. Here's a snippet: "[T]his case isn’t really about establishing a direct link between Ravi’s spying and Clementi’s death. But it is very much about the privacy that college students deserve in their dorm rooms." Read more here.