Rutgers Trial Witness Admits He Lied


A gay man identified only by his initial "M.B." is expected to testify as early as Thursday. M.B.'s identity has not been revealed and even Ravi's defense lawyers had to argue to get his name. The defense was finally given M.B.'s name on the condition that it not be revealed. The jury also knows the identity of M.B., but have been prohibited from disclosing his name.

The judge has allowed cameras in the courtroom and the trial is live-streamed on several Web sites, including But when M.B. testifies, the media has been ordered to train the pool camera on M.B.'s hands and not his face. Audio from the court will also be turned off.

While the press in the courtroom will see and hear M.B., the witness will not enter or leave the courtroom through public hallways, and instead will enter the courtroom through a secure entrance.

M.B. has been described as a man about 30 and a bit hefty. His identity is being protected because he is being treated as a victim of the alleged crime and he is not out as a gay man.

M.B. and Clementi met on the online gay meeting site Adam4Adam. The two had a rendezvous in Clementi's Rutgers dorm room on Sept. 19, 2010 and again on Sept. 21.

He is expected to testify about his relationship with Clementi, what he and Clementi knew about the webcam and Clementi's reaction to his roommate.

A key element for the prosecution is to demonstrate that Clementi felt intimidated by Ravi's alleged actions. That has prompted a tussle over whether to admit an email that Clementi sent to his dorm's resident adviser asking for a room change.

Clementi's email reads, "I feel like my privacy has been violated and I feel extremely uncomfortable sharing a room with someone who acted in such a wildly inappropriate manner."

Judge Glenn Berman ruled that most of Clementi's email can be admitted since it describes his emotional state, but the jury cannot see the portion of Clementi's email that characterizes Ravi behaving "in such a wildly inappropriate manner."

The email was sent to RA Raahi Grover who in his report to dorm superiors wrote, "Resident Tyler Clementi approached me today 9/21 at 11pm to discuss issue of violation of privacy by his roommate Dharun Ravi."

Grover's memo adds, "Tyler is upset and uncomfortable and wants a room change asap and for Dharun Ravi to receive some sort of punishment"

Ravi's lawyer argued that allowing Clementi's written complaint before the jury would be prejudicial since they are prohibited from bringing in other evidence that Clementi had to be encouraged by another friend to file the complaint, and Clementi chose to return to his room with Ravi despite Grover's offer to let him stay elsewhere.

Earlier testimony has featured Ravi's classmates describing how he tweeted about Clementi's gay dates and urged them to also watch.

Those classmates have also repeatedly said that Ravi had not expressed any anti-gay feelings or disdain for Clementi for being gay. They said he was more concerned that Clementi's date was older and apparently not a Rutgers student who might steal his iPad.

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