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Friday, December 3, 2021

Lawyer accuses Arbury’s lawyers of lynching the defendants

Author: RUSS BYNUM

BRUNSWICK, GA (AP) – The attorney who prompted an outcry by saying black pastors should be removed from a murder trial over Ahmaud Arbury’s death told a court on Friday that a courthouse rally and other support the families of a murdered black man are comparable to the “public lynching” of three white defendants.

“This case has been tainted with things that have nothing to do with the guilt or innocence of these defendants,” attorney Kevin Gough told the judge, arguing that civil rights activists are trying to sway a disproportionately white jury.

Gough renewed the wrongful trial motion the day after Reverend Al Sharpton, Reverend Jesse Jackson and Martin Luther King III joined hundreds of pastors, most of them black, praying and rallying on the steps of the Glynn County courthouse. The event came after Gough objected to Sharpton sitting in the back row of the courtroom with Arbury’s parents last week.

“There are third parties involved in this case,” Gough said. “They did it from a gallery in the courtroom. They did it outside. This is what public lynching looks like in the 21st century. ”

He told the judge that his client’s right to a fair trial had been violated by a “leftist mob.”

Supreme Court Justice Timothy Walmsley dismissed the fair trial motion without discussion.

“I don’t remember that there were any violations in the courtroom itself,” the judge said of the Thursday rally, which coincided with the testimony of the defense.

Gough is William “Roddy” Brian’s leading attorney who, along with father and son Greg and Travis McMichael, chased Arbury in pickup trucks after spotting a 25-year-old man running in their coastal Georgia region on February 23, 2020. Brian filmed a video on his mobile phone of Travis McMichael shooting Arbury as he punches and grabs a shotgun.

Arbury’s murder later became part of wider recognition of racial injustice in the criminal justice system following a string of deadly clashes between blacks and the police.

Gough has repeatedly expressed concern about outside activists seeking to influence the case. He made the lynching remark after prosecutor Linda Dunikoski accused Gough of deliberately provoking outrage among black pastors and civil rights activists.

“They react to what he did strategically, deliberately, intelligently, so that there is an answer so that he can then complain about it,” Dunikoski said. “This is a good lawyer. Because now he has filed a misjudgment motion based on what he himself summoned. “

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Arbury’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, called Gough’s recent comments “funny.”

“He’s done things on a number of occasions that just surprise me when he says that,” she told reporters outside the courthouse. “Very surprising, but not unexpected, I would say.”

With closing arguments set for Monday, prosecutors and defense attorneys spent Friday discussing the nuances of legal instructions the judge plans to give the jury ahead of the trial.

Much of the debate revolved around how the judge would describe the restrictions on arresting a citizen. Defense lawyers say Georgia law allowed McMichels and Brian to detain Arbury for police because they had good reason to suspect he was a burglar. Prosecutors say there is no evidence that Arbury committed any crimes in the neighborhood.

Defense attorneys objected when the judge said he would instruct the jury that “the arrest of a private person without authorization must take place immediately after the commission of a crime or in the event of a felony committed during the escape”.

Robert Rubin, Travis McMichael’s attorney, said the proposed wording would make it nearly impossible for a jury to find a plausible reason for arresting Arbury on the suspicion that he had committed previous burglaries in the same building under construction from which he was seen fleeing. before death.

“We built this whole thing around a probable cause… that Travis McMichael and Greg McMichael identified on February 23rd for the events that happened earlier,” Rubin said. “And you will gut it all.”

Travis McMichael revealed this week that he saw security footage of Arbury inside an unfinished house and that he noticed Arbury “sneaking” outside of it 12 days before the shooting. None of the five videos of Arbury in the house showed him stealing. The owner said he installed the cameras after the belongings were taken from the boat, which he kept in an open garage.

Walmsley said he will consider the changes if attorneys can support them, citing other cases.

—— This version is updated with a fuller quote on “lynching” and explains that Gow’s comment related to the pastors rally and other activities.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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