Dahrun Ravi, the former Rutgers University student convicted of bias intimidation of his roommate, Tyler Clementi, will be sentenced to 30 days in jail for the 2010 crime, a New Jersey judge announced today. Ravi could have faced the maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and deportation to his native India.
Ravi was found guilty of bias intimidation and invasion of privacy earlier this year for an incident in which he secretly broadcast a private encounter between Clementi and another man via webcam. Clementi later committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge, though Ravi’s trial did not involve charges related to Clementi’s death.
“This individual was not convicted of a hate crime,” said New Jersey Superior Court Judge Glenn Berman. “He was convicted of a bias crime, and there’s a difference. I say this because I do not believe he hated Tyler Clementi. He had no reason to. But I do believe he acted out of colossal insensitivity.”
Berman acknowledged “both sides may take issue with” the punishment, but he argued that the sentence must “be balanced, and if possible, constructive, and if possible, providing a measure of closure.”
In addition to 30 days in jail, Ravi must undergo three years’ probation, perform 300 hours of community service, pay $10,000 to a bias crime victims’ group, and attend a “counseling program relative to cyber-bullying and alternative lifestyles.”