Prosecutors Knew Aaron Swartz Was A Suicide Risk But Were ‘Heedless’ In Their Pursuit Of Him

Prosecutors Knew Aaron Swartz Was A Suicide Risk But Were ‘Heedless’ In Their Pursuit Of Him
World
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

There are now over 35,000 people asking president Barack Obama to fire the U.S. District Attorney in charge of prosecuting Aaron Swartz. Swartz, the 26-year-old cofounder of Reddit committed suicide last week in his NYC apartment.

Swartz’s family is blaming MIT and federal prosecutors for his death, believing that the pending criminal charges in relation to his alleged hacking caused the young entrepreneur to take his own life. Andy Good, Swartz’s former lawyer, claims that prosecutor Steve Heymann knew that the Internet activist was at risk of committing suicide, but refused to give some slack.

“The thing that galls me is that I told Heymann the kid was a suicide risk,” Good told the Boston Globe. “His reaction was a standard reaction in that office, not unique to Steve. He said, ‘Fine, we’ll lock him up.’ I’m not saying they made Aaron kill himself. Aaron might have done this anyway. I’m saying they were aware of the risk, and they were heedless.”

Swart’z lawyer at the time of his death, Elliot Peters, said that he was faced with the same unrelenting attitude when the prosecutors refused to negotiate any plea deal resulting in no prison time for Aaron Swartz. The prosecution demanded that Swartz plea guilty for 13 felonies and spend at least 6 months in jail.

“There was such rigidity with the people we were dealing with,” Peters said. “I couldn’t find anyone in that office to talk about proportionality and humanity. It was driven by a desire to turn this into a significant case, so that some prosecutor could put it in his portfolio.”

Paul Hudson | Elite. 

Share Tweet
React
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

Preston Waters

Preston Waters is a thinker. He's not your traditional philosophical persona, however, as he leaves no topic untouched. Covering all the bases, from business to women, Preston Waters is the ultimate man's man for Gen-Y.

More In World

World Emily Arata

Grab Your Metal Detectors! Artist Hides $16,000 Worth Of Gold On The Beach For People To Find

Ready, set, treasure hunt. English artist Michael Sailstorfer buried $16,000 in gold bars along the Outer Harbour beach in Folkestone, England. He’s calling the installation “Folkestone Digs.” Beginning today, residents and visitors have the chance to claim the gold for themselves. There are no rules. The event coordinators have even buried dozens of metal washers in […]

Also On Elite

Sports

Had He Been Taller, Michael Jordan’s Brother Would Have Been The Greatest Ever

James Jordan always claimed that his son Larry had the real basketball talent in the family. With that sentence, Melissa Isaacson began her 2009 article that took a look back at Michael Jordan’s formative years. Like most articles that touch upon the subject of Jordan’s family, Isaacson’s piece made a familiar claim: For all the […]

Life

6 Reasons Every Human Being Should Work In A Restaurant At Least Once

Everyone goes out to eat, to have a beer and to socialize, but not everyone can claim to have first-hand experience within the confines of a restaurant. People without such experience simply lack comprehension of what it’s like to deal with other people. From indecisiveness to stupidity, neediness to outlandish behavior, guests dining out in […]

World

379 Customers In A Row Decided To Pay It Forward At A Florida Starbucks

On an ordinary Wednesday morning, one woman paid for a stranger’s coffee and sparked a chain of generosity that lasted the entire day. Employees at a Starbucks in St. Petersburg, Florida, reported that at 7 am, a woman ordering an iced coffee requested to pay for the drink of the customer behind her in the drive-thru […]