May 072011
 
 May 7, 2011  Court, Youth & Schools

Sean Gardiner reports:

A former Rutgers University student who spied on fellow freshman Tyler Clementi as he had a dorm-room encounter with another man was allowed to enter a program Friday that could help her avoid criminal charges.

Molly Wei appeared in court in New Brunswick, N.J., where it was announced she would be accepted into a pretrial intervention program.

Mr. Clementi’s roommate, Dharun Ravi, is alleged to have activated a webcam in their room and then watched in a separate room with Ms. Wei as Mr. Clementi kissed a man he had invited to the Piscataway dormitory.

Read more in the Wall Street Journal.

Nothing will bring Tyler Clementi back. But if Ms. Wei just made a poor youthful decision in participating in watching/invading his privacy, then I commend Mr. Clementi’s family for their support of this deal. I share their hope that the young student will have a greater sensitivity and commitment to kindness going forward – and that she will not just spectate or sit idly by while people’s privacy is being invaded.

It is a tragedy that one young life was lost. It would be a second tragedy to waste another over what appears to be a secondary role.

The more difficult question, of course, is what should happen to the student who actively invaded Mr. Clementi’s privacy.

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