Dharun Ravi | Discrimination | News | Tyler Clementi

Dharun Ravi Sentenced To 30 Days In Prison For Role In Tyler Clementi's Suicide


Has justice been served?

Dharun Ravi, the former Rutgers University student found guilty of a biased crime for secretly broadcasting gay roommate Tyler Clementi's private gay hookups, a catalyst in Clementi's 2010 suicide, was sentenced today to 30 days in jail, 300 hours of community service, counseling on cyber-bullying and LGBT communities.

In addition, Ravi must pay a $11,950 fine that will be donated to a state-sponsored group "dedicated to assisting victims of biased crimes," which as far as I know is a unique and appropriate addition.

Calling Ravi's actions "colossally insensitive and criminal," Judge Glenn Berman lambasted Ravi for an apparent lack of contrition. "I heard this jury say, 'guilty' 288 times--24 questions, 12 jurors. That's the multiplication. I haven't heard you apologize once."

Though Clementi's parents and friends have been asking for a harsh sentence for the apparent unremorseful Ravi — Clementi's mother called Ravi's actions "evil and malicious" — gay activists have advocated against the maximum 10-year and deportation sentence Ravi faced. Today many of them agreed with Judge Berman's decision.

Steven Goldstein from Garden State Equality remarked:

Those who have oppose giving Dharun Ravi jail time have asked, 'Hasn’t he suffered enough?' But we believe there’s another question:  Has Dharun Ravi done enough? Has he done enough to use his place in history to speak out against student bullying and to make a positive impact on millions of lives across our state and nation?

Thus far, no.

Though Tyler Clementi has left us, the rest of Dharun Ravi’s life will help tell his life story. Ravi’s own lawyer portrayed him as a young man who engaged merely in jerky behavior. Ravi can stay that course, or he can do some good with his life by making amends and fighting for the justice and dignity of every individual, including people who are LGBT. That much is up to Ravi.

Shane Windmeyer from Campus Pride said the case should serve as a reminder that all campus administrators and students have an obligation to work against anything even vaguely resembling discrimination or bigotry.

"Every person has a responsibility to stand up for those who experience bullying and harassment – tragedies can be averted anytime even a single voice speaks out for the voiceless,” he said.

"Bystanders – those who witness bullying or harassment and do nothing to stop it – can plead neither ignorance nor innocence. Active silence can be as damaging as active bullying and result in tragedies like Clementi’s death.”

Dan Savage described the sentencing as "far, far too lenient."

In addition to his immediate punishments, Ravi also faces three years probation. The prosecution, meanwhile, suggested today it may appeal Berman's decision. If they do not appeal, however, Ravi will report to a correctional facility on May 31st.

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. I think 10 years might be been too much but 30 days is certainly far too lenient. And the truth is he probably won't serve half of that.

    Posted by: mike128 | May 21, 2012 5:29:47 PM

  2. How does the judge "think" that this criminal does not hate? Is he a mind reader? And is there really such a big difference between hate and bias? This judgement is laughable. At least give him some time to *think* in solace of his actions and stop shifting blame.

    Posted by: mike | May 21, 2012 5:30:18 PM

  3. This is the kind of decision that makes Americans suspicious of and resentful of immigrants, and that makes wronged people take the law into their own hands. When one fails to get justice in the courts, the courts lose their legitimacy.

    30 days doesn't even pretend to punish the miscreant Ravi. It's worse than no jail term at all. Instead, it trivializes the seriousness of Ravi's numerous crimes. This judge basically just mocked the Clementi family's loss and their grief.

    Worse, this judge has no responsibility to explain the basis for his decision. The disproportionality of the sentence to the multiple crimes committed by Ravi (not even taking into account the resulting death) demands a judicial inquiry into whether any quid pro quo financial improprieties have occurred. One hates to think that paid-for leniency could be a possibility, but it is the only logical explanation for this judge's stunning lack of judgment. Let the investigation begin, and make the punishment fit the crime.

    Posted by: Judge Judy | May 21, 2012 5:38:27 PM

  4. I wonder how much time a black man with no money would be given if convicted of the same 15 charges? This was unacceptable. The absolute best punishment would be to simply deport him. Most of the charges he was convicted of (or should I say found guilty of) were basically un-american. Send him packing!

    Posted by: Steve Pardue | May 21, 2012 5:39:17 PM

  5. Please deport him. We have enough bullies with no morals working in congress and running corporations here already. He was convicted, among other things, of tampering with evidence, interfering with the investigation and trying to influence a witness. He acted like a criminal, before, during and after the crime. He showed no remorse. Please get rid of him.

    Posted by: Insensitivefools | May 21, 2012 5:44:37 PM

  6. Read the New Yorkers coverage. It really puts the whole thing in perspective and really leaves you wondering what, if any, impact Ravi's bullying had on Clementi's suicide. It's still available on the website. Not to say I condone or forgive what Ravi did..just saying there are lots of facts that don't appear in the sensationalized versions of this story.

    Posted by: calpoidog | May 21, 2012 5:56:29 PM

  7. Not only do I agree with what Judy says above, but the judge's decision ALSO mocks the difficult decisions made by the prosecutors and totally undermines the courageous decision by the jury.

    I've been around courthouses enough to know that a LOT of the people who populate them are hardly above accepting a bulging envelope in exchange for 'consideration'. The evidence in Brooklyn courts is ample, and we only ever hear about the tip of the iceberg. The possibility really can't be discounted, particularly when you're dealing with defendants of means, whose backs are against the wall.

    Deport the whole damned lot of them back to India, and send this judge with them as their light-skinned house monkey.

    Posted by: Hard Liner | May 21, 2012 6:01:18 PM

  8. I find this light sentence a travesty. The only aspect of it which I am pleased about is that, as convicted felon, he may not be deported, but he will never be able to become a citizen. Is that correct? I'm Canadian, so I don't necessarily know.

    Posted by: John Freeman | May 21, 2012 6:02:29 PM

  9. Sensationalized versions ? Are you kidding me ?

    As if the New Yorker's coverage wasn't ?

    Give me a break, this guys was convicted on numerous counts of numerous crimes, he's a felon several times over.

    That so many gay people are so willing to look the other way, to outright lie about this and make excuses, even now, is just outrageous.

    Where's the remorse ? Where's the apology ?

    Ravi has got off VERY light for having committed so many crimes.

    Just like our worthless fagot media whores are going to get off light.

    It's disgusting, you'll all still worship Savage and company after this, and make endless excuses for them as well.

    Let me be clear, I'm not a self-hating gay man - I hate YOU and your sick ilk.

    Posted by: NVTodd | May 21, 2012 6:17:48 PM

  10. The judge's ruling was just preposterous and shameful. This guy has disgraced himself for the rest of his life and having to live with the truth of the consequences of his jerky actions will be his punishment.

    Posted by: jose bertolero | May 21, 2012 6:59:31 PM

  11. This is a prime example of how the justice system works for us. Keep in mind if this verdict had been delivered during the Bush administration, blame would be placed in the oval office. So why not place the blame there now.
    Where is the outrage from the mainstream media and the liberal politicians?
    This sentence is far too lenient. If this man wasn't a minority he'd be sent to the chair, but the message has been sent, the only minority that it is free to attack is gay community.
    Where is the statement from our first "gay" president about this, or was that just another lie to get re-elected?
    (Now bring it on, thats right I'm a moderate that leans right.) Keep the name calling clean and intelligent.

    Posted by: Iwontgrowup | May 21, 2012 7:16:56 PM

  12. It has nothing to do with the prez or if you're a mod. The prez will win or lose regardless of his gay support. We get none from the other side and they win and lose
    Find a fight somewhere else, clearly that's what you're looking for

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 21, 2012 7:46:47 PM

  13. http://fablog.ehrensteinland.com/2012/05/21/hommage-a-marilyn-monroe/

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | May 21, 2012 7:46:48 PM

  14. What I see happening is 5 days served and then he will get a lucrative book deal and then become a "celebrity" pundit on Fox or some other network. This makes me sad and angry.

    Posted by: pavelb | May 21, 2012 8:15:58 PM

  15. Tell me..even if he wanted to can Ravi get US citizenship with all these felony convictions or can his father just buy it for him like he bought Justice in New Jersey?
    Has Chris Christie short listed this judge yet for a promotion?

    Posted by: mcNnyc | May 21, 2012 8:19:24 PM

  16. Why would Ravi want US citizenship? He and his family have obviously done fine without it!

    This sentence has angered me beyond belief. It's made a total mockery of the trial-by-jury system. Hell, Martha Stewart got more time! It's very difficult to believe that there isn't elitism going on here...if Ravi was a poor black kid he would be doing at least a year. And that's part of what angers me: the punk has been given every social and economic advantage, and this is the person he's turned out to be.

    I have 2 hopes for the future: that the law governing deportation of felons is iron-clad, and Ravi will be banished, and that the arrogant punk violates his probation.

    Posted by: jim | May 21, 2012 9:02:34 PM

  17. Ravi did not tell that boy to jump off a bridge. Suicide is the result of mental illness. That boy should have been in counseling. His parents failed him. Ravi made fun of him. Prolly he wanted to try to understand this gay sex thing, so he recorded it. And others wanted to know too. If Clementi had recorded Ravi having sex with a girl, the most Ravi would have done is kick his ass. He wouldn't have jumped off a bridge, for crying out loud. He'd have walked around like a stud. What's the matter, for all your Pride, there is no pride, is there? Think about it. Do you get it now? And instead of soul searching to see why your message is rejected, you look for a scapegoat. Yes Ravi's life is ruined. He's being forced into prison. He has a criminal record. Clementis wasn't forced, legally or physically, to do anything by Ravi. He should have kicked his Ravi's ass and kept stepping. Tell me, why did Clementi kill himself? Try being honest with yourself.

    Posted by: Kewl | May 21, 2012 9:31:33 PM


    The New Yorker story was written before the trial began and that reporter had less than all the facts. The jury, in contrast, heard all the witnesses and saw all of the exhibits. They had to consider 35 charges and they returned verdicts in less than 48 hours. That is very fast. This was easy for them. For all of the harsh rhetoric he directed at Ravi, this idiot judge seems to be unmoved by the evidence and the jury's decisiveness. I still do not understand how he concluded that 30 days was correct and I hope the prosecutor is successful in his appeal of that sentence.

    Posted by: au contraire | May 21, 2012 9:49:44 PM

  19. Kewl what message are you referring to? care to answer or are you yet another drive by

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 21, 2012 10:25:24 PM

  20. how many gay orgs have called for NO jail time??

    first we fought for hate crimes legislation, now we think it's too harsh??

    Posted by: t | May 21, 2012 10:48:48 PM

  21. George, this message that your unhappiness should be blamed on someone else. Look into why Clementi was distressed. He came out and he knew that he'd face a hard time about it - not just from his college roommate who he knew all of 3 weeks. But from his family, future employers, his social groups, church, etc. And he didn't know what to do about the conflict in life. But somehow that is society's fault. Not Clementis fault. Not his fault that he was confused. Not his fault that he didn't have a strong enough relationship with his family to convince them to get the help they all needed. No, let's blame everyone else. Lets accuse everyone who chooes not to embrace homosexuality of being a bigot. let's blame the college freshman. Because hey, hes not allowed an opinion. Only your opinion matters. . We all make choices. I choose what i can handle and what i cant. I might want to tell a cop to kiss my ass,but I don't, even when I have a right to. Because I'm not prepared for the consequence. Tyler wasn't prepared for the consequences, even as much as he had rights. If he was prepared, he would have told Dhrun to blow him, and kept on living. That's the problem with your message. Stop the goddamn whining -everyone's got problems. I'm sorry this kid saw no other way. He should have chosen life. With life there is hope.

    Posted by: Kewl | May 21, 2012 10:56:50 PM

  22. Not a drive by. Just not an insincere demagogue like most of what I'm reading here.

    Posted by: Kewl | May 21, 2012 10:57:56 PM

  23. I'm surprised you're not a drive by, we get a lot
    First where did I say I was unhappy? Or are you lumping me in with everyone. You can have any opinion you want but sometimes people are bigots. And C. It was a violation of privacy, that got him in trouble. You can deal with someone watching anyway you want to, some call the police (not saying that's what happened). He would have gotten time and probation for just simple privacy in NJ, they don't play.

    I take In what you say I do but it's hard for me not to think I'm talking to a str8 person who will truly never know how I feel. I will never know how you feel. Situations hit us different because in someways we are different. So maybe when you read comments like these maybe not on this story, think about the person, the situation and why the person is reacting like that.

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 21, 2012 11:41:26 PM

  24. Had he not recorded him he may still have killed himself. Ravi would not have been involved or in court. He did, erased things and tampered with a witness.
    We will never truly know why, everyone has an opinion and a right to it.

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 21, 2012 11:51:23 PM

  25. George, I appreciate your comments. Measured, temperate. And yes, I do get it. Trust me. I do. It's not equal. It's not fair. It hurts. It's demoralizing. But here's one thing I heard this year, that has me looking at stuff differently. It isn't just what you say at the table that counts. It's what you do away from the table. So absolutely, speak out against wrong-doing. Help people to understand. Help them to see the light of your truth. But bullying is wrong, on either side. We'll never win that way. We get it thru building trust. Credibility. And this wishing that Ravi gets thrown off a bridge prevents any of that from happening. As much as you feel you are right, there's another grip of ppl who sware they are right. How do we get to a point where we agree. Listening, talking, patience. Respect.

    Posted by: Kewl | May 21, 2012 11:57:09 PM

  26. « | 1 2 3 4 5 »

Post a comment


« «Gay Man Delivers Speech After Being Banned From Catholic School's Commencement« «