Arbery suspects have hearings
The three suspects in the Feb. 23, shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery are scheduled to appear before Glynn County Chief Magistrate Judge Wallace E. Harrell, tomorrow at the county courthouse, according to magistrate court deputy clerk Luetrice Lott. The judge will determine whether authorities had sufficient evidence to charge the men in Arbery’s death.
Cobb County District Attorney Joyette Holmes, who was assigned as the lead prosecutor to the case by Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr will be at the preliminary hearing.
Gregory McMichael and Travis McMichael are charged with felony murder and aggravated assault. William Bryan, whose video of the fatal shooting went viral online, is charged with felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.
Arbery was said to be jogging through the Satilla Shores neighborhood in Brunswick when he was confronted by the alleged father and son duo, both armed white men. The confrontation resulted in the death of Arbery, an unarmed African American and former Brunswick High football player.
Bryan allegedly used his vehicle to confine and cut off Arbery during the pursuit.
Bryan’s attorney Kevin Gough has filed several motions on behalf of his client to include a motion for a speedy trial, motion for bail without waiver of preliminary hearing, motion for relief from prejudicial and inflammatory statement and a motion for disclosure of search warrants and related documents.
All four motions are posted online at Coastalcourier.com
Gough has stated that Bryan was merely a witness and bystander in the incident.
Magistrate court hearings had been suspended until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lott said they were installing computer screens that would allow the defendants to appear in court on video.
The father and son duo each have their own respective attorney. Travis McMichael is represented by Robert G. Rubin and Jason B. Sheffield. Gregory McMichael is represented by Franklin J. and Laura D. Hogue.
This past weekend Arbery’s aunt Thea Brooks, held another rally in Brunswick calling for the removal of two Glynn County Police Officers she said were involved in the case. Brooks said the family want Glynn County Police Chief John Powell and Officer Robert Rash fired from their jobs.
“Tonight we are protesting for the removal of Chief Powell, who is on administrative leave. We are also seeking to have Officer Rash removed from Office.”
Brooks said Rash sent a text message to a citizen, giving him permission to call another citizen, in this case Gregory McMichael, a former cop and investigator for the District Attorney’s Office, in reference to any problems he was having in his home instead of calling the police first.
“This police Officer (Rash), instead of doing his job, put it in the hands of another citizen,” Brooks said. Right now we are in a good spot. Arrests have been made but I feel that there should be more action. We still have a whole judicial system that failed us that needs some action taken upon them as well as this chief and this officer.”
Powell was recently indicted on a variety of charges and is on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the case. Rash was disciplined in 2018 for failing to arrest a fellow officer who assaulted his estranged wife in front of him and other officers.
The death of Arbery stirred an uproar which has recently exploded when another unarmed African America, George Floyd, was killed by a white police officer in Minneapolis, Minn. Like the Arbery case the alleged murder was videotaped and seen around the world. For roughly nine minutes Floyd was handcuffed, face down on the street with the knee of Officer Derek Chauvin pressing down on his neck. Despite pleas by bystanders to ease up and remove his knee, Chauvin stood firm as Floyd slowly died.
“It was the same thing,” Brooks said about her nephew’s death and that of Floyd’s. “A lynching in broad daylight. It was two different scenarios but they mean the same thing.”
And while the Floyd case has taken center stage Brooks said she plans to keep fighting for her nephew in Brunswick until justice is served.
“We are going to make sure they know who Ahamud is and we won’t let them forget,” she said. “I have confidence in the people who are handling the case now, since the GBI has taken over and we have a new prosecutor.”
A small peaceful protest for the memory of Floyd, Arbery and Breanna Taylor, an African American woman killed in her own home in a botched police raid in Louisville, took place on E.G. Miles parkway this past Sunday.