Roommate in Rutgers Suicide Case Pleads Not Guilty
Dharun Ravi, the Rutgers University student accused of crimes allegedly committed against Tyler Clementi, his college roommate, plead not guilty on Monday to 15 charges, including bias intimidation, invasion of privacy, and evidence tampering.
After Ravi allegedly released a video of his roommate having sex with another male student last fall, Clementi committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington bridge a few days later.
Ravi, 19, remained silent throughout the court proceedings, which took less than ten minutes. His lawyer, Steven Altman, entered a not guilty plea for the teenager and waived having the indictment against him read in court.
The most serious of the charges against Ravi is bias intimidation, punishable with up to ten years in prison. To be guilty of that crime, according to MSNBC, "a jury would have to be persuaded that Clementi believed he was being targeted because he was gay."
Judge Glenn Berman scheduled a status conference on the case for July 25. Ravi's lawyers and the Middlesex County Prosecutors will exchange evidence before that date.
"Our family is grateful for the active work of the prosecutor's office in this case," said Clementi's father after the hearing. "We are eager to see the criminal justice process move forward."