Ahmaud Arbery Wiki – Biography
The white Georgia man arrested for killing an unarmed black man, Ahmaud Arbery, used a phylogenetic slur after the deadly shooting, according to another suspect’s account to an investigator. The allegation was revealed as the prosecution presented its case at a preliminary hearing on Thursday morning for defendants Gregory McMichael, 64, his son Travis McMichael, 34, and their neighbor William “Roddie” Bryan, 50.
The defense, which was to follow the prosecution at the hearing, has yet to respond to the allegation of the slur. Arbery, 25, was shot to death in the coastal city of Brunswick on Feb. 23 after he was pursued by the McMichaels. His family said he was out for a jog, while the McMichaels said they thought he was a burglary suspect.
Suspects and Arrested
All three suspects were arrested last month in the death of Arbery in February. The McMichaels appeared in court via a video from jail. Bryan was not present for Thursday’s hearing.
Special agent Richard Dial with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said during the hearing that Bryan said during a May 13 interview that he heard Travis McMichael say, “f—ing N-word” after Arbery had been shot.
The McMichaels were taken into custody on May 7 and charged with felony murder and aggravated assault for their role in Arbery’s death after a video of the fatal shooting was released. Bryan was arrested two weeks later on charges of felony murder and attempted false imprisonment.
The McMichaels said they armed themselves before pursuing Arbery because they believed he might have had a gun, according to a Glynn County police report. Lawyers for the family have said that Arbery was unarmed.
Gregory McMichael told officers that Arbery “began to violently attack” Travis, who fired after the two “started fighting over the shotgun,” the police report said.
Bryan, who recorded the video of the shooting, is accused of using his vehicle to “attempt to confine and detain Ahmaud Arbery without legal authority” during the incident, according to a state criminal warrant.
Investigators believe the “underlying felony” of false imprisonment by Bryan “helped cause the death of Ahmaud Arbery,” Georgia Bureau of Investigation Director Vic Reynolds said at a news conference last month.
Kevin Gough, a lawyer for Bryan, told NBC’s “TODAY” show last month that his client was only a witness to the shooting and followed the McMichaels because he wanted a photo of Arbery.
“There had been a number of crimes in the neighborhood, and he didn’t recognize him, and a vehicle that he did recognize was following him,” Gough said.
Bob Rubin, an attorney for Travis McMichael, has said that Arbery’s death is a tragedy, “but that does not mean a crime has been committed.”
Attorneys for both Travis and George McMichael have cautioned against a rush to judgment in the case.
“So often the public accepts a narrative-driven by an incomplete set of facts, one that vilifies a good person, based on a rush to judgment, which has happened in this case,” said a statement quoting Laura Hogue, who with her husband, Frank Hogue, is representing George McMichael.