An adult bully is still a bully. The way the prosecution approached the case and the outcome that was going to arise ultimately led to his suicide. It is a terrible tragedy to think that a man that did so much to connect the world globally was treated in the manner he was. Aaron Swartz will be missed.
Instead of taking a stand Aaron Swartz took his life. He could have stood up in that courtroom and delivered an epic speech in favor of the free flow of information and the benefits that are being denied to humanity by Jstor's decision to restrict its content.
It is ridiculous to keep scholarly articles tucked away like that. What if someone could read them, build upon them, and advance our understanding, our knowledge, science, technology? Progress is being held back in the name of "intellectual property". It is the same issue as companies patenting things just so they can keep them off the market.
Money and the worship of capitalism should never stand in the way of progress. Humanity got where it was today by insisting that we become every day bigger, stronger, faster, and above all SMARTER. When intellectual property and the need for the rapid advancement and growth of humanity through the sharing of information and the resulting increase in science and technology come to an impasse we should always find in favor of knowledge over the almighty dollar.
I think they definitely pursued the charges too aggressively, but he had plenty of legal support and whatever jail time he would have faced would not have been a life sentence. It would have been miserable, but his decision to kill himself rests entirely upon his own dead shoulders and not anyone else.
I do believe that the prosecutors are not without fault in causing stress in Aaron's life. Having said that, the decision to kill himself rested on Aaron alone. I think that the prosecutors and MIT allowing the case to go forward did not help. I do not think the cases were necessarily fair. But that is not to say that they indirectly killed Aaron Swartz. I would think that other factors, including Aaron's mental health would play the biggest role in what happened.
Though the fall of Aaron Swartz is a classic example of a miscarriage of justice, this is because the laws themselves are unjust. Prosecutors, like anybody else involved in legal processes, are simply doing the job they are expected to do. The problem here lies with the laws, rather than those who are sworn to uphold them.