"Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)
Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)
A new report from MIT about the university’s involvement in the prosecution and subsequent suicide of young technologist and activist Aaron Swartz revealed damning details about lead prosecutor Stephen Heymann, who has come under fire for reported aggressive overreach in the case.
According to details in the report flagged by HuffPo, Heymann “compared the Internet pioneer to a rapist and suggested he had ‘systematically revictimized’ the Massachusetts Institute of Technology by not taking a plea bargain.”
Soon after Swartz’s suicide, both his close family, friends and legal defense team condemned the federal prosecutors relentless approach in the case against Swartz for downloading millions of JSTOR files. While the primary victim of Swartz’s actions, JSTOR actively refused to push for charges against the technologist, while federal prosecutors pushed on, threatening Swartz with decades in prison.
Stephen Heymann, an assistant U.S. attorney for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts, told a lawyer for MIT on Aug. 9, 2012 that it is disturbing to him “whenever a defendant ‘systematically revictimized’ the victim, and that was what Swartz was doing by dragging MIT through hearings and a trial,” according to a memorandum recounted in MIT’s report on its conduct in the Swartz case. Heymann “analogized attacking MIT’s conduct in the case to attacking a rape victim based on sleeping with other men,” the report states.
Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email email@example.com.More Natasha Lennard.
Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
"Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987
Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)