A judge on Friday sentenced Travis and Gregory McMichael, two men convicted in the murder of Ahmed Arbery, to life without parole.
big picture: A third white man, William “Roddy” Bryan, who was also convicted in Arbery’s murder, was sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole.
Running news: Arbery, a 25-year-old black man, was chased and shot to death while on the run in February 2020. It was only after a video of the murder went viral in May 2020 that prosecutors took the case forward, sparking national outrage.
- His name, along with George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, was at the center of the 2020 racial justice protests.
Background: Arbery was shot and killed by Travis McMichael outside of Brunswick, Ga. McMichael and his father, Gregory, as well as their neighbor, William “Roddy” Bryan, chase a running Arbery in their vehicles, leading to a conflict and killing the younger McMichael Arbery.
- Arbery’s family said he was out for regular walks.
Travis McMichael was convicted of nine charges, Including One count of malice and four counts of felony.
- Gregory McMichael was convicted of four counts of felony.
- Bryan was found guilty of three counts of felony.
- All three men were convicted of felony assault, false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit a felony.
- His lawyers have said they will appeal the decision.
Under Georgia law, The minimum punishment for a felony is life in prison, but the question of parole was left to the judge.
- Prosecutors did not seek the death penalty.
- Those serving life sentences for violent crimes such as murder cannot be considered for parole until they have served 30 years in prison.
What are they saying: “The man who killed my son is sitting in this courtroom next to his father every day. I will never get a chance to sit next to my son – not at the dinner table, not on holidays, and nowhere too,” Arbery’s father, Marcus, said before the sentencing.
- “I stand here today to do what he can’t and that is to fight for him. Fight for his memory, his legacy, and to tell you who he was, because that’s the only thing you put into it.” Didn’t listen. Courtroom, and more than anything else, you should have known who my boy was,” said Marcus Arbery.
- The three men who killed Arbery were “fully committed to their crimes, let them be fully committed to the consequences,” said Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones.
Judge Timothy Walmsley sat in silence For Arbery was running for about a minute before handing over the sentence to represent “only a fraction of the time.”
- “About two years ago, a graduate of Brunswick High, a resident of Glynn County, [school]In this community a son, a brother, a young dreamer were shot dead. as we understand it, [he] left for … apparently to go for a run, and he ended up running for his life,” Walmsley said before sentencing.
- He has pleaded not guilty.
- a federal judge scheduled That trial is due to begin next month.
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