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Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Lawyers provide jury with final arguments in favor of Ahmaud Arbury’s death


BRUNSWICK, GA (AP) – On Monday, lawyers made a final push to convince a jury of Ahmaud Arbury’s murder, with prosecutors said three white men pursued him solely “because he was a black man running down the street,” and defense lawyers have repeatedly blamed Arbury for his own death.

Finally, the defense attorney for the man who fired the fatal shots said Arbury, 25, was killed when he violently resisted legitimate attempts to detain him in order to answer questions about burglaries in an area near the port city of Brunswick. , Georgia.

“It’s absolutely terrifyingly tragic that this happened,” said attorney Jason Sheffield. “Here the law is intertwined with heartache and tragedy. You are allowed to defend yourself. “

Lawyers have filed appeals against the disproportionately white jury after 10 days of testimony ended last week. Closing arguments were to resume on Tuesday. The last word will remain with the prosecutors, because they bear the burden of proving their case beyond any reasonable doubt.

Arbury’s assassination became part of a larger national program to combat racial injustice after a graphic video of his death was leaked online two months later. Although prosecutors did not claim racism was the cause of the murder, federal officials charged all three with hate crimes, claiming they stalked and killed Arbury because he was black.

Father and son Greg and Travis McMichael grabbed guns and chased Arbury in a pickup truck after they spotted him running through their unit on February 23, 2020. A neighbor, William “Roddy” Brian, joined the chase and recorded a video of Travis McMichael’s discovery of Arbury hitting and grabbing a shotgun.

No one was charged with murder until Brian’s video was leaked and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation took over from local police. All three have been charged with murder and other crimes.

Prosecutor Linda Dunikoski told the jury that the defendants had no evidence of Arbury’s crimes, but instead acted on assumptions based on gossip and speculative social media posts.

“They made the decision to attack Ahmaud Arbury in the driveways because he was a black man running down the street,” Dunikoski said. She added: “They shot him. Not because he posed a threat to them, but because he did not stop and talk to them. “

Defense lawyers say the people suspected Arbury of robbing a house under construction and intended to hold him until the police arrived. CCTV cameras captured Arbury at the house five times, but none of the videos showed that he was stealing or damaging anything.

Dunikoski said McMickels and Brian chased Arbury for five minutes, using their trucks to cut him off, knock him off the road, and otherwise prevent him from escaping. After the shooting, she repeated Greg Michael’s words to local police that Arbury was “caught like a rat.”

Brian recorded Travis McMichael standing with a shotgun at the door on the driver’s side of his idle truck as Arbury approached on foot and then dodged the passenger side. They met in front of the truck, which was blocking the camera’s view when Travis McMichael fired the first of three shotgun shots. The video shows Arbury punching him and grabbing the pistol, two more shots are fired, then Arbury turns to try to run again before falling facedown in the street.

“He chose to fight,” said Laura Hogue, Greg McMichael’s attorney. According to her, Arbury decided “for no reason to rush at a man armed with a shotgun, leaving him no other alternative than the ability to kill him.”

Referring to the smiling photo of Arbury that the jury showed at the trial, Haug told the group: “A handsome teenager with a big smile in a crooked baseball cap can go astray … And years later, he can crawl into a house that does not exist. his own, and run away instead of facing the consequences. “

Brian’s lawyer, Kevin Gough, suggested that Arbury should have called for help if he was being pursued unfairly.

“Why doesn’t he shout, ‘Hey, somebody call 911! Crazy people are after me, ”said Gough. “Maybe it’s because Mr. Arbury doesn’t need help.”

Gough said Brian didn’t know Mc Michaels had pistols until the moment they fired. He invited Brian to join the pursuit of a higher power so that he could record the shooting on his phone.

“You can call it karma. You can call it destiny. I would call it divine providence, ”said Gough. “Someone is directing Mr. Brian, whether or not it is a conscious thought process. Something is leading Mr. Brian down this street to document what is happening. “

Sheffield, representing Travis McMichael, said his client never wanted to shoot Arbury but was forced to make a life-and-death decision when Arbury attacked him in front of the truck.

He said residents of Satilla Shores were already nervous amid reports of thefts and suspicious people in the area. He said Arbury’s frequent visits to the unfinished house gave rise to suspicion that he stole items from a boat that the owner of the house kept in a garage without doors shortly before he installed the cameras.

Dunikoski noted that Arbury never threatened the McMichaels during the chase, and he had no weapons.

“You cannot take a gun into a fist fight. It’s not fair, is it? the prosecutor said.

She said it was Travis McMichael who attacked Arbury – first in his truck, then pointing a shotgun at him as Arbury ran towards him.

“They cannot demand self-defense by law because they were the first, unjustified aggressors,” Dunikoski said, “and they started it.”

Arbury went to technical college and was preparing to study electrical, just like his uncle when he was killed.

World Nation News Desk
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