NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (CBS 2) — Homecoming festivities at Rutgers University this weekend are taking place under a dark cloud. Students are mourning the freshman who killed himself after his private life was made very public over the internet.

It was supposed to be an evening for the young violinist to showcase his talent, but instead of Tyler Clementi’s first performance with the Rutgers Symphony Orchestra, there was a special tribute in his memory.

Tyler Clementi plays the violin. (credit: CBS 2)

Earlier in the day, at the Rutgers homecoming game, football fans observed a solemn tribute for Clementi as well. Among them was friend and fellow freshman Carass Javiniar.

“I thought it was a special moment,” Javiniar said. “We can all come together and celebrate his life.”

She said just last week, she and Clementi worked on a class project together.

“He was very shy. I had to ask, ‘Tyler, what do you think?’ He was quiet,” Javiniar said.

Clementi killed himself after his roommate, Dharun Ravi, and fellow student Molly Wei allegedly streamed video on the web of him having a sexual encounter with another man.

“From what I understand, I think it is absolutely a hate crime,” student Michelle Yampolsky said. “These students picked on him because of his sexuality.”

Clementi had alerted school officials to the alleged invasion of privacy, though it’s unclear how the administrators handled the complaint.

Now, students are left to cope with his death.

“Everybody’s a community here, and one goes down, we all go down, so it’s painful,” sophomore Phil Berman said.

A candlelight vigil is planned for Sunday night, and gay rights groups are organizing two town hall meetings next week.

Comments (22)
  1. jason says:

    These 2 heartless immigrants belong back in there own country where they belong..lets thank obama for everyone and there 3rd cousin to come into the states…my suggestion..send them back to there own country where they belong and throw them off the plane into a river on the way over!!!

  2. Lauren Felton says:

    Hmm. It seems as though my quote about Rutgers Housing and their refusal to provide LGBT students with the safe spaces we deserve has been removed. Interesting…

  3. MinGRidge says:

    Bill – The guy wasn’t concerned with getting videotaped – he had no idea it was happening. Why would he be concerned if he was in a locked, private room?

    And I think you’re wrong about the scenario you described — I think if an Asian were the victim and the other 2 were white, it would be more easily classified as a hate crime. Or black. Or Latino. Or any other minority group that is traditionally picked on by society.

  4. Proud Agnostic says:

    Hey Bill ,The only racist in the room is YOU!YOU PHILISTINE RACIST CREEP!!!Crawl back under your rock!

  5. Bill says:

    The media would have reported it as a “prank” if an Asian was the victim and the people filming it, white. The people doing that would have got away with a minor probation.

    It ultimately boils down to racism.

    If the guy was so concerbed about getting videotaped, he should have rented a hotel room.

  6. Mare says:

    Rutgers, do the right thing; expell Ravi and Wei from the Class of 2014 now.

  7. Boston says:

    Sexual orientation is a two way street and for some a very private one. Though slanderous, malicious and inconsiderate acts are punishable, for Tyler to take offense so personal as to take their own life could possibly mean he had other underlying issues as well. This may have been the straw that broke the camels back.
    Rutgers did the right thing to remember him. It goes to show that we never know, or see how much we are appreciated until we are gone.

    It truly is a tragic loss for family and friends and the impact Tyler would have made in this world. My prayers and condolences are with them.

  8. fern says:

    Jail and the death penalty have never resolved anything but what do we have to punish such a hateful crime. They do not belong to a civilized society yet they are part of it whether we like it or not, they are the result of an education and an environment.and in a sense we are all responsible to a certain extent.

  9. Andrew Mark says:

    Because this tragedy happened on a college campus, both Rutgers and the local prosecutor should be taking action. The reports so far only speak of the prosecutor having brought preliminary charges. If the prosecutor found enough to charge them with crimes, Rutgers should have, at least, suspended them. So far, there are no reports along those lines. Rutgers…and all colleges…must make it really clear that there’s NO…as in NONE…TOLERANCE for hate crimes, including violations of privacy, etc.

  10. Noni says:

    Wei has nothing to do with it, Ravi juat came in and used her room.

    1. Anu Bhatia says:

      Molly could have tried using her brain, if any and put a stop to it right there. By allowing it to happen in her room, in her presence she is as much a party to the crime as that viper Ravi.

  11. Justice says:

    Yes, both should be given the death sentence for invading someone else’s privacy.

  12. m says:

    The placement of a camera to spy on a private person should be a federal offense if it isn’t already and punishable to the nth degree for Wei and Ravi in particular.

    This couple Wei & Ravi are a the spoiled spawn of the I’m better than you crowd.

  13. Proud Agnostic says:

    My heart goes out to the family of this young man.The 2 snakes that are responsible for his death should face murder charges.If they are acquitted,and that is possible in a liberal cess pool like NJ,they should be put on a predator watch list.

  14. Rich Collfio says:

    I think they both should be pushed off the George Washington Bridge

  15. april20 says:

    My heart goes out to the families. It’s a shame that you can’t be safe in your own dorm room. These two students are obviously minorities and they more than most have probably been discriminated against. What they did to Tyler was not only invade his privacy but drove him to take his own life. I would say they deserve to be charged with murder not invasion of privacy. His life is over so should theirs. They do not belong in society.

    1. m says:

      More importantly, these two reprobates saw nothing wrong in this behavior & thought it was no biggie to do this heinious crime that led to the second crime of harrassing a person to death. That’s murder in my book!

      Ravi & Wei should get the maximum punishment allowable by law.

  16. Mindy says:

    wei and ravi are two cold and terrible people. I hope they get the maximum penalty. THey messed up his life, but theirs will be messed up forever because of their cold snake hearts.

  17. dot says:

    It wasn’t hateful pranking; it was violations of privacy, harassment, at least.

    Another victim of socialist aggression.

    1. m. says:

      And you’re another criminal who sees nothing worng with these heinious crimes and an ignorant heartless fascist tro// to boot.

  18. Trentgal says:

    My heart literally is broken over this tragedy……the roommates should and must get at least 10 years behind bars for the hateful prank they did… was not done out of love but rather to humiliate and torture Clementi……where do these students think it is fun to invade someone’s privacy and cause havoc in someone’s life????? I would take civil action against the students for violating The pursuit of happiness that belonged to Clementi…….

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