CNN reported on Sept 30:
A Rutgers University student who apparently committed suicide was the unknowing target of an internet broadcast showing him in a sexual encounter, New Jersey authorities said Wednesday.
Two other Rutgers students have been charged with invasion of privacy after they allegedly placed a camera in 18-year-old Tyler Clementi's dorm room without his knowledge and then broadcast Clementi's sexual enounter, according to the Middlesex County prosecutor's office.
"If the charges are true, these actions gravely violate the university's standards of decency and humanity," Rutgers President Richard L. McCormick said in a statement Wednesday.
Although Clementi's body has not been found, an attorney for the Ridgewood, New Jersey, family said Wednesday, "On behalf of the family of Tyler Clementi, I can confirm that Tyler committed suicide last week by jumping from the George Washington Bridge."
According to media reports, two students identified by the New York Times as Dharun Ravi and Molly Wei, both 18, have each been charged with two counts of invasion of privacy for allegedly secretly placing a camera in Clementi's dormitory room and transmitting the sexual encounter with another male on the Internet.
Ravi has also been charged with two additional counts of invasion of privacy for trying to use the secret camera to view and transmit another encounter. The most serious charges carry a maximum sentence of five years. He had also allegedly posted messages on Twitter reading "Roommate asked for the room till midnight. I went into Molly's room and turned on my webcam. I saw him making out with a dude. Yay."
The report quoted the authorities as saying that Ravi streamed his roommate’s intimate encounter live on the Internet on the same night after he had tweeted the message.
Clementi, a college freshman and an accomplished violinist, jumped from the George Washington Bridge into the Hudson River in an apparent suicide three days later after posting a goodbye message on his Facebook page on Sept 22 saying: "Jumping off the gw [George Washington] bridge sorry."
Bullying in schools and cyber-bullying
This month alone the US media reported three youth suicides on the basis of their actual or perceived sexual orientation. Seth Walsh, 13-year-old California middle school student, died in hospital, days after he attempted to take his own life after reportedly enduring relentless bullying for being gay. He had apparently tried to hang himself from a tree in his backyard.
On Sept 9, 15-year-old Billy Lucas of Greensburg, Indiana hanged himself at his grandmother’s home. Friends of Lucas said that he had been tormented for years based on his perceived sexual orientation.
On Sept 23, 13-year old Asher Brown, a gay teen in Houston, Texas came home from school while his parents were at work. He shot himself in the head after enduring what his mother and stepfather say was constant harassment and bullying.
School bullies broke the arm of 11-year-old Tyler Wilson because he joined the cheering team.
The issue of harassment and bullying in schools and cyber-bullying gay youths face have been taken up by the media and NGOs and concerned members in the LGBT community including openly gay syndicated sex/relationships columnist and author Dan Savage. Savage of Savage Love fame appears in a video with his husband Terry in the "It gets better" You Tube video project launched this month. He’s soliciting videos from fans who want to provide support and encouragement to gay teens who face adversity, discrimination and bullying in high school.
CNN's Anderson Cooper also called out Andrew Shirvell, an assistant attorney general in Michigan, on his obsessive campaign against openly gay University of Michigan student assembly president Chris Armstrong. Shirvell has accused Armstrong of "advancing a radical homosexual agenda", and has posted pictures of Armstrong with rainbow flags and swastikas on his blog Chris Armstrong Watch, in addition to calling him "Satan's representative" and picketing outside Armstrong's house.
Troubled? Need to talk?
HORIZONS - Lesbian and Gay Hotline, Hong Kong
Hotline: (852) 2815 9268
Tue & Thu 7.30pm -10.30pm
Elements - Quality gay life, Hong Kong
Web: www.elements.org.hk (in Cantonese only)
Boys and Girls Clubs Association, Hong Kong
A mainstream NGO established to campaign against the harassment of LGBT students in Hong Kong schools.
Web: www.bgca.org.hk (in Cantonese only)
Read more in a Fridae article.
PT Foundation MSM programme, Malaysia
HIV/AIDS and sexuality counseling hotline
Hotline: (03) 4044 5455 or (03) 4044 5466
Mon - Fri, 7.30pm - 9.30pm
Oogachaga Counselling and Support Hotline, Singapore
Hotline: (65) 626 86 626
Tue - Thu, 7pm - 10pm; and Sat, 2pm - 6pm