What we learned from the trial testimony about the murder of Ahmaud Arbery

Travis McMichael says he was attacked by Arbery

Younger McMichael stand as the defense’s first witness and told the court he felt he was in a “life or death” situation when he shot Arbery.

Initially in his testimony, he said there was an increasing level of crime, including car break-ins, in the neighborhood where he lived with his parents for the 18 months leading up to the murder. Arbery is there.

Other residents testified that they were aware of petty crimes in the vicinity. One said those things started more than 15 years ago. Another neighbor, Sube Lawrence, said she keeps up with crime updates on her neighborhood Facebook page, and that a neighbor will warn her if there’s a “suspicious person lurking” at a house under construction nearby, so Lawrence can take the kids. hers inside.
Ahmaud Arbery's mother cried when the body cam video was played on the first day of the trial

Travis McMichael testified that on February 11, 2020, he saw someone ‘walking through the dark’ in the neighborhood, got out of his truck, and encountered a Black man, who which he said appeared to be reaching into his pocket. Travis McMichael assumed the man was armed, jumped back into his car and the man ran to the house under construction, he testified. McMichael said he called the police and returned home to his father. Authorities never saw, spoke to or arrested the person he said he saw that night, he testified.

On the day of the shooting, the elderly McMichael came to their home and said, “the guy just hit the road and ran past the house, something happened,” Travis McMichael testified.

The father and son boarded their truck and eventually caught up with Arbery, who was running in the neighborhood, and Travis McMichael made at least twice to talk to him while still in their car. He testified that Arbery didn’t talk to him, but ran away when Travis McMichael mentioned the police were coming.

The defense rests during the trial of the death of Ahmaud Arbery

Young McMichael testified about the route they took through the neighborhood while keeping up with Arbery, adding that at one point he noticed another truck near Arbery and saw the runner appearing to be “grabbing.” car. Prosecutors argue Bryan, the third defendant, got into his truck and joined the pursuit without knowing what was going on and rammed Arbery with his vehicle.

During questioning by prosecutor Linda Dunikoski, the defendant admitted that he had never seen Arbery armed during the pursuit, had never heard Arbery make verbal threats, and that Arbery had never responded. back or show interest in talking to McMichael.

At the end of the chase, and after Travis McMichael broke free and pointed a weapon at Arbery as he ran in his direction, he testified that he reached the front of his truck, where he continued first contact with Arbery. Travis McMichael testified Arbery grabbed the shotgun and hit him.

“I shot him,” he told the court. “He took my gun, he attacked me, obviously… he was attacking me, that if he gets the shotgun from me, it’s a life-or-death situation.”

Investigators share what defendant said in interviews after shooting

Detective Parker Marcy, of the Glynn County Sheriff’s Department, testified that Gregory McMichael told him he had never seen Arbery commit a crime.

The detective testified that Gregory McMichael told him he did not see Ahmaud Arbery commit a crime.
Sleuth read record about an interview he did with the elderly McMichael after the shooting, in which he quoted him as saying he had watched a video of the house under construction and saw someone who appeared to be Arbery. “break in, either being or wandering around” the site, adding that the house had no doors or windows for “more than a year.”
Why did first responders in the Ahmaud Arbery shooting fail to provide first aid

“I don’t think that guy actually stole anything from there or if he did, it’s early in the process,” McMichael said. Witness detective Gregory McMichael told him he used his son’s phone during the chase the day of the shooting to call 911 and say if Arbery stopped running, they were going to hold him, but he doesn’t use the word “arrest”. arrest the citizen “or “detain”, or say Arbery will be arrested for whatever reason.

Glynn County Sheriff Jeff Brandeberry, who also interviewed Gregory McMichael, said the latter never used the words “arrest,” “detain” or “infringing” when they spoke at the scene of the shooting. .

Roderic Nohilly, a police sergeant in Georgia’s Glynn County, also testified for Gregory McMichael. unknown in police interview whether Arbery committed a crime before they went after him.

Landlord says he didn’t ask McMichaels to secure the site

At the heart of the case is a house under construction in the Satilla Shores neighborhood, whose residents are said to have become nervous when people enter. A resident testified that she saw A “very tall” black man stood in the doorway of the home sometime in late 2019 or early 2020. For a long time, the house had no doors or windows, witnesses testified.
Prosecutors broadcast the 911 call Travis McMichael made weeks before Arbery's murder

The home’s owner, Larry English Jr., testified in a September 24 court hearing (he had previously told the court that serious health conditions prevented him from testifying in person) Surveillance footage at his estate caught people several times in late 2019 and early 2020, and in some cases, he called 911.

English testified that he called authorities in October 2019 to report an individual he described as “a guy of color” with curly hair and tattoos who was “considering around”. He called back in November 2019 to see a white couple entering his property, telling police that “We had… some stolen items about a week and a half, two weeks ago in there.” A day later, he called authorities and said he had seen “the same person who was there about a week and a half, two weeks ago at the construction site.”

He was asked if anything had ever been taken from his construction site, to which he replied, “I don’t know.”

Police Responding to Ahmaud Arbery's Shooting Testifies What He Saw When He Arrived At The Scene

He testified that he never authorized the McMichaels to confront anyone on his site. He said while not posting the surveillance footage on social media, he could have shown it to Matt Albenze, a neighborhood resident.

Albenze testified in court that on the day of the shooting he called police from his home after noticing Arbery “standing there, looking around” the yard of the house under construction, saying that the man in the yard had made him I think of the video you showed him.

He said he went into the house to get a gun and a phone, called the police emergency line and when he returned outside he could see Arbery in the house under construction but could not see him. doing what.

He testified for Arbery then took off, and Albenze entered his home without speaking to anyone else. He said he heard gunfire a few minutes later.

Bryan told agent he had ‘instinct’ Arbery did something wrong

Bryan’s attorney, Kevin Gough, said in a delayed opening statement His client joined the chase with no intention of harming Arbery nor did he attempt to attack the runner with his vehicle. The attorney pointed to surveillance video showing Bryan standing on the porch when he noticed Arbery running past, with McMichaels chasing him, saying Bryan calmly went inside and retrieved his cell phone and car keys, not his car keys. right rifle.
Defense attorneys in Ahmaud Arbery's murder trial sought a plea agreement for one defendant and was denied, Arbery's mother's lawyer says

Assistant Special Agent for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) Jason Seacrist testified earlier in the trial. Bryan told him in a May 2020 interview that he was on his porch when the sound of someone running and a car engine caught his attention.

Bryan told the agent that he said, “You caught him? Need help?” and then grabbed his key to see what was going on and if he could help, according to the interview transcript read by the agent.

Bryan said he tried to slow Arbery during the chase to get a picture of him, so “eventually something will happen other than him running away and the police having no idea who he is. Who.”

The marine criminal testified that he asked Bryan why the police needed to know who Arbery was.

“Because I knew he did something wrong,” Bryan replied. The agent asked Bryan what made him think Arbery did something wrong.

“It’s just human instinct, I don’t know,” Bryan said, according to the transcript of the interview. “I think he stole something,” he later added.

CNN’s Devon M. Sayers and Alta Spells contributed to this report.


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