Student in gay suicide case wants charges dismissed
Lawyers for a student accused over the suicide of his gay roommate say the charges against him should be dismissed and that prosecutors withheld evidence.
Dharun Ravi, 19, of Plainsboro, New Jersey, is accused of invasion of privacy and bias intimidation in the case of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi, who jumped to his death last September after believing his sex session with another man had been secretly filmed.
Clementi, 18, was not out. The talented violinist’s death sparked a national conversation about homophobic bullying and LGBT teen suicides.
Ravi, who is pleading not guilty to the charges, is accused of setting up a webcam in their shared room and broadcasting the scenes.
Prosecutors say he filmed Clementi because the latter was gay. Ravi faces jail if convicted of bias intimidation.
His attorney Steve Altman says there is no evidence of any bullying or homophobic bias, the New Jersey Star-Ledger reports.
Mr Altman is seeking to have the charges dismissed and says the prosecution must allow evidence which includes documents from Clementi’s computer and a note found in his dorm room.
Another student who allegedly viewed the footage, Molly Wei, 19, of West Windsor, is expected to testify against Mr Ravi as part of a plea deal.