Two men have been arrested and charged with murder and aggravated assault for the February shooting of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
What We Know:
- Gregory McMichael, 64, and his son, Travis McMichael, 34, were arrested on Thursday and will be booked into the Glynn County Jail.
- Arbery was shot to death in Brunswick, a coastal city about midway between Savannah, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida, on Feb. 23 as he was running through the Satilla Shores neighborhood. His family says he was out jogging, while the McMichael’s claimed that they thought he was a burglar.
- Cellphone video showing the moment Arbery was killed has prompted national outrage since surfacing online this week, but his mother said she can’t bring herself to watch it. In the 28 second video, Gregory McMichael armed himself with a .357 Magnum, and his son grabbed a shotgun. They jumped into their pickup truck and chased Arbery. Police said a third man, identified as a neighbor, joined the chase, and jumped into the McMichael’s’ truck.
- In the video, Arbery is seen running down a road as a white pickup truck is stopped in front of him. Arbery runs around the vehicle. The video then shows Arbery and another man appearing to tussle as shots fired.
- George Barnhill, one of the prosecutors who first handled the case, defended the actions of the McMichaels and their neighbor in the truck. In a letter to the Glynn County Police Department obtained by NBC News, Barnhill wrote that the men had “solid firsthand probable cause” to chase Arbery, a “burglary suspect,” and stop him.
- The office of Tim Tom Durden – the district attorney in Liberty County, who is now handling the case – asked that the Georgia Bureau of Investigation begin an inquiry Tuesday, and now the bureau’s Kingsland Office began investigating Wednesday.
- Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp called the video of the shooting “absolutely horrific” and said Georgians deserve answers.
- Prior to the pair’s arrest, Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones told ABC News she believed authorities had not taken them into custody because Gregory McMichael had a lengthy career as an investigator in the Brunswick district attorney’s office before recently retiring.
- After the video circulated on social media Tuesday, a large crowd of protestors marched through the neighborhood where Arbery was killed.
- Black Panther and Creed actor Michael B. Jordan shared the call to action Wednesday, saying on Instagram that the video made him sick to his stomach.
“This family and the country deserve justice, and they deserve it now. They deserve a transparent investigation of this brutal murder, but our nation deserves it, as well. We need to reckon with this. This goes on. These vicious acts call to mind the darkest chapters of our history.” – Joe Biden
Arbery would have turned 26-years-old on Friday. Cooper-Jones described her late son as humble, kind, well-mannered and beloved by his family and peers. “Ahmaud didn’t deserve to go the way that he went,” Cooper said.
“The series of events captured in this video confirm what all the evidence indicated prior to its release— Ahmaud Arbery was pursued by three white men that targeted him solely because of his race and murdered him without justification. This is murder.” pic.twitter.com/v4TAs0RjO7
— Lee Merritt (@MerrittForTexas) May 5, 2020