Ex-Rutgers Student Convicted Of Hate Crime

March 16, 2012 by staff 

Ex-Rutgers Student Convicted Of Hate Crime, A jury has convicted an ex-Rutgers student on some hate crime counts and invasion of privacy involving the use of a webcam to spy on a gay roommate, the Associated Press reports. Update at 12:27 p.m. ET: Here’s how the Associated Press describes the jury’s findings:

The jury found Ravi not guilty on some subparts of some of the charges, but guilty of all 15 counts as a whole. The most serious charges against Ravi – bias intimidation based on sexual orientation, a hate crime – carry up to 10 years in prison each. Legal experts said the most Ravi would probably get all together at sentencing May 21 would be 10 years.

Update at 12:23 p.m. ET:The Courier-News, sorting through the complicated verdict, reports that jurors found Ravi guilty of invasion of privacy, bias intimidation, attempted invasion of privacy, tampering with physical evidence, hindering apprehension or prosecution, witness tampering and tampering with physical evidence.

Update at 12:20 p.m. ET: The bias intimidation conviction, in addition to the invastion of privacy, made the verdict “a clean sweep in favor of the prosecution,” said Paul Callan, a legalanlyst for CNN.

He predicted the impact will be felt nationwide. “This is really going to change, I think, the way people think about social media, particularly what young people think of as the norm as far as posting everything.”

Update at 12:06 p.m. ET: Ravi could face 10 years in prison because of the conviction on some of the bias intimidation counts, CNN reports.

Ravi had been charged with four counts of bias intimidation as a hate crime, two counts of invasion of privacy, two counts of attempted invasion of privacy and six counts of witness tampering and hindering apprehension.

He was found not guilty on some of the bias intimidation counts, but guilty on others.

Update at 12:01 p.m. ET: Dharun Ravi, 20, shook his head slightly after the guilty verdicts were read for all 15 counts, including bias intimidation, a hate crime, and invasion of privacy.

Ravi could be sentenced to prison and could be deported to his native India, even though he has lived legally in the U.S. for years.

Ravi’s lawyer had argued that the college freshman was not motivated by any malice toward gays – a necessary element to prove a hate crime – and that his actions were just those of an immature “kid.”

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