As some of you are probably aware there is a very much publicized trial going on about a Rutgers student who committed suicide because his roommate would record and web cam him doing sexual acts with another man. The student is named Tyler Clementi, and he jumped off the George Washington Bridge in on September 22, 2010. The roommates name is Dharon Ravi, and the first time that he left his webcam on was, according to Ravi, because of security issues and he did not trust the man that Clementi brought into the room. He then witnessed Clementi kissing the man and then twittered about it. The second time he invited people on twitter to also watch the webcam, which was pointing directly at Clementi’s bed. After this second time, Clementi jumped off the bridge to commit suicide. Ravi is currently under prosecution for this event and charged with invasion of privacy, bias intimidation, witness tampering, and evidence tampering.
This is a picture of Tyler Clementi:
There is always a big deal being made about cyber bullying in this country and how it can affect the victims. This is truly a different situation that from most cyber bullying examples I have seen in the past. Most of the time I thought it would be happening online, usually in chat rooms and whatnot. It really is amazing how evil and unjust people can be with each other just because they are online and cannot see the other person. This event is in my opinion definitely more serious that the above example of what cyber bullying is. It is obvious that Ravi intended to show the webcam online and for the reason of embarrassing and harassing Clementi. He definitely deserves to be charged with the crimes he did, but what I found curious was that he was not actually charged with anything even close to manslaughter or murder. He indeed did not murder or intend for Clementi to be killed, but because of Ravi’s actions Clementi committed suicide. I am very curious about what his sentence would be if he is found guilty of invasion of privacy and bias intimidation. Do you think that Ravi deserves to go to prison for what he did, or do you think that there is a more suitable punishment for his crimes?
Another very interesting part of this case was that Ravi was not the only one involved in this scheme. Molly Wei was also with Ravi the first time he saw the webcam and was a part of the plan to show the webcam on twitter. Wei is actually not being charged with a crime because she is testifying against Ravi. She still might be expelled from the University though, along with Ravi. Probably the most interesting turn of events in this case was that Ravi rejected a plea agreement which involves him spending absolutely zero time in prison. That very much surprised me, but from further analyze of the evidence and events it seems that the prosecution may be in trouble. There are some hidden factors in the case that really helps the defense. One is that the twitter event never actually happened and that the actual viewing of the webcam only happened for a few seconds. This is going to be a very interesting case and one that I will follow very closely. I ask again, do you think that he should be found guilty for his crimes?