3 Suspects Indicted On Murder Charges For Ahmaud Arbery's Death

by Valerie Williams
Father And Son Charged With Murder Of Ahmaud Arbery

A Georgia grand jury indicted Gregory McMichael, Travis McMichael, and their neighbor, William “Roddie” Bryan in the death of Ahmaud Arbery

Three suspects are finally facing charges for the February 23rd death of Ahmaud Arbery, a man shot while jogging through a Brunswick, Georgia neighborhood. Video of his horrifying final moments after being chased by the suspects went viral and people demanded justice for Arbery. It seems it’s finally coming, however slowly.

According to NBC News, Gregory McMichael, 64, his son Travis McMichael, 34, and their neighbor William “Roddie” Bryan, 50, all face charges of malice and felony murder, as announced by the Cobb County district attorney yesterday. Arbery, who was 25 years old at the time of his death, was jogging through the neighborhood when the three men decided to pursue him because they thought he looked like a burglary suspect.

The McMichaels pursued Arbery but Bryan is accused of using his truck to corner him so he couldn’t escape. The indictment wording accuses the trio of “unlawfully chasing him through the public roadways of the Satilla Shores neighborhood in pickup trucks and shooting him with a shotgun.” The viral video of Arbery’s death shows a struggle between Travis McMichael and Arbery before shots rang out and Arbery stumbled into the middle of the street.

The indictment includes several charges: four counts of felony murder, two counts of aggravated assault, and one count each of false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment. Bob Rubin, attorney for the younger McMichael, says his client intends to plead not guilty. “We look forward to presenting all of the facts regarding this tragic death in a court of law.”

Counsel for Gregory McMichael insists his arrest and indictment is a “rush to judgment.” Bryan’s lawyer, Kevin Gough, calls his client’s actions, “what any patriotic American citizen would have done under the same circumstances.”

It took three months for the McMichaels to be arrested and charged — the pair were booked into Glynn County Jail on May 7th and Arbery was killed on February 23rd.

Arbery’s family is thankful that his alleged killers are finally facing justice. The young man’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, tells NBC News that she’s “very pleased” that charges are being brought. “At this point, I do believe the case is moving in the right direction,” she said. Her lawyer, Lee Merritt, says, “We still obviously have to see this through to a conviction and appropriate sentencing, but as Miss Cooper said, I believe we’re on the right track.”

In the wake of George Floyd’s death at the hands of white police officers, protests have broken out all over the country with people crying out in defense of Black lives, and demanding that senseless deaths of unarmed Black people end. The protests have led to racist monuments being torn down in several cities and an overall awakening at the horrors of racial injustice in America.

Cobb County District Attorney Joyette M. Holmes says, “This is another step forward in seeking justice for Ahmaud. We will continue to be intentional in the pursuit of justice for this family and the community at large as the prosecution of this case continues.”