Indian Americans are petitioning the White House on the conviction of Dharun Ravi, a Rutgers students, for hate crimes in the case of suicide by his gay roommate in 2010.
Ravi, 18, was found guilty, by a New Jersey jury last week. He faces up to 10 years in jail.
In a petition on the White House website, Ravi’s conviction was called “prejudged” because of an impression created by media, politicians and activists that he was indeed guilty.
“We know none of this is true: nothing was ever recorded/ broadcast; every single witness testified that Ravi had NO hatred towards gays; however muddled law led to the guilty verdict. Ravi was robbed of one of the most fundamental rights guaranteed by the US Constitution: presumption of innocence.
Ravi’s roommate Tyler Clementi committed suicide after finding out he had been watched during a sexual encounter with another man.
So far, over a 1,000 people have signed the petition, which requires 25,000 signatures to get a response from the White House.
Found guilty of invasion of privacy, bias intimidation and witness and evidence tampering among other charges, Ravi now faces 10 years in prison. The sentencing has been set for May 21.
The petition ‘Address the fact that media is driving Justice System’s decisions: 18-year-old Rutgers student Dharun Ravi is NOT Biased’ is addressed to the Obama administration.
“In 2010, Dharun Ravi secretly recorded his roommate Tyler Clementi with another man and posted it on the internet. For the next two years this is what was portrayed by media,” said the petition dated March 16.