By VERENA DOBNIK
NEW YORK (AP) - The family of a Reddit co-founder who committed suicide in New York weeks before he was to go on trial on federal charges that he stole millions of scholarly articles is blaming prosecutors for his death.
Twenty-6-year-old Aaron Swartz hanged himself Friday night in Brooklyn. In 2011, he was charged with stealing millions of scientific journals from a computer archive at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in an attempt to make them freely available.
He had pleaded not guilty, and his federal trial was to begin next month. If convicted, he faced decades in prison.
Swartz's family said in a statement Saturday that his death "is the product of a criminal justice system rife with intimidation and prosecutorial overreach."
The U.S. attorney in Boston couldn't be reached for comment.
A new poll conducted by Quinnipiac University found overwhelming opposition to the way the arrest of Eric Garner was handled while the majority support the broken windows policy, which cracks down on low-level crimes to prevent bigger ones from occurring. Garner's death has brought the policy into the spotlight. The Staten Island man had been selling untaxed cigarettes when he was arrested. A police officer placed him in a chokehold and Garner died.