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Former Rutgers student apologizes over webcam spying

TRENTON, N.J. - A former Rutgers University student, who was criticized by a judge for refusing to apologize for using a webcam to spy on his male roommate kissing another man days before the roommate killed himself, apologized on Tuesday and said he has accepted responsibility for what he did.

Dharun Ravi, 20, also said he will begin serving a 30-day jail term on Thursday even though he does not have to.

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Through a lawyer, Ravi issued his most contrite public statement yet in a case that made him a symbol of what his family called an overzealous prosecution and that made his roommate, Tyler Clementi, a prime example of what gay-rights advocates said were the consequences of bullying.

“I accept responsibility for and regret my thoughtless, insensitive, immature, stupid and childish choices that I made on Sept. 19, 2010, and Sept. 21, 2010,’’ Ravi said in his statement. “My behavior and actions, which at no time were motivated by hate, bigotry, prejudice, or desire to hurt, humiliate, or embarrass anyone, were nonetheless the wrong choices and decisions. I apologize to everyone affected by those choices.’’

After spending two days looking at the Twitter feed - on which Ravi announced, “I saw him making out with a dude. Yay’’ - Clementi, a shy, talented violinist, threw himself from New York City’s George Washington Bridge on Sept. 22, 2010.

In March, a jury convicted Ravi of all 15 criminal counts with which he was charged, including invasion of privacy and bias intimidation. On two of the intimidation counts, he faced up to 10 years in state prison. Last week, a judge sentenced him to 30 days in jail beginning May 31.

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