Ex-Rutgers Student Convicted of Webcam Spying Leaves Jail

Monday, June 18, 2012

A former Rutgers student convicted of bias intimidation for using a webcam to watch his gay roommate kiss another man was released from jail after serving 20 days of a 30-day sentence on Tuesday.

Dharun Ravi, 20, left the Middlesex County jail with his attorney, sporting newly grown facial hair and wearing a navy T-shirt, carrying a plastic bag of his belongings as he left the facility early Monday morning.

His lawyer, Steven Altman, picked him up around 8:30 a.m.

Ravi, who was let out 10 days early for good behavior, still has 300 hours of community service, sensitivity training and a $10,000 in fines ahead of him.

He will, however, face deportation proceedings to his native India.

"Based on a review of Mr. Ravi's criminal record, ICE is not initiating removal proceedings at this time," Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman Ross Feinstein said in a statement.

In March, Ravi was convicted of 15 charges including invasion of privacy, bias intimidation and hindering prosecution after using a remote webcam to spy on his roommate, Tyler Clementi, during their freshman year at Rutgers University in September 2010.

Shortly after Clementi found out about about the spying, he jumped to his death from the George Washington Bridge.

Prosecutors are appealing the sentence, seeking a five-year prison sentence. The sentencing guideline in New Jersey for bias intimidation, a hate crime, is five to 10 years.

A spokesman for the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office says the appeal is still in the works.

Ravi's defense has also filed notice that they intend to appeal the sentence as well.

Nancy Solomon and the Associated Press contributed reporting


Comments [4]

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Sep. 05 2012 09:13 AM

I think Ravi definitely had some guilt, as it was non of his business to publicize his roommate's personal activities. Of course, the family also has some fault if they did not accept their son as he was, and thus added to his stress and embarrassment. Therefore, although I do not think that sending Ravi to jail for several years will solve the issue. Instead, what I would have expect was him to actually be sorry for how bad he makes his generation look, how disgusted Rutgers students and Alumni are by his actions, and how much hurt he has brought for his family. I hope he devotes his life to creating a friendly environment for people who are bullied or are made to feel odd because they are different.

Jun. 19 2012 01:40 PM

Nah, maybe he should be the other guys butler, you know the other guy who also got spied on but didn't kill himself? Doesn't anyone realize that's why he got a light sentence? Because the "other guy" who is still alive asked the judge for leniency since Tyler killed himself due to his mother's religious homophobia and not the webcam incident? Undocumented surveillance isn't as big a deal as you make it out to be. Google and Facebook spy on you everyday but you haven't killed yourself yet.

Jun. 19 2012 12:38 PM
Paul E. Wanakraka from Carteret, NJ

Yeah, poor kid has just suffered enough.

He should have to be the Clementi family's butler for one year.

Jun. 19 2012 11:46 AM

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