Man who filmed Ahmaud Arbery shooting admitted he tried to block him in
The Georgia man who filmed Ahmaud Arbery’s shooting death admitted that he tried to block the unarmed jogger’s path on Feb. 23 while two other white men chased him down in their pickup truck, a senior investigator in the case testified Thursday.
William “Roddie” Bryan, one of three men charged with murder in the case, even pulled off the road at one point during a four-minute pursuit to allow Gregory McMichael, 64, and his son Travis McMichael, 34, to continue their pursuit, Richard Dial, the lead investigator for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, said during a hearing in Glynn County Court.
Bryan told police he jumped into the chase after he saw the McMichael’s drive past and yelled, “do you got him?”
“He made several statements about trying to block him in and using his vehicle to try to stop him,” Dial said under questioning by Travis McMichael’s attorney, Jason Sheffield. “His statement was that Mr. Arbery kept jumping out of the way and moving around the bumper and actually running down into the ditch in an attempt to voice his truck.”
“At this point, I would say Mr. Arbery was trying to escape,” Dial said. “He’s trying to get away.”
The McMichael’s believed Arbery, who was jogging through the Satilla Shores neighborhood, was a local burglary suspect because he had stopped at a local construction site while in the neighborhood.
After catching up with him, Bryan’s video shows Travis McMichael getting out of the truck with a shotgun. He fired three shots during a scuffle with Arbery, who fell mortally wounded.
According to Dial, Travis McMichael then yelled, “f–king n—-r as Arbery lay dying, Dial testified. He said McMichael had used that slur “many times” on social media and in text and instant messages in the past.
Dial also disputed that Arbery had burglarized the construction site.
“My understanding of the law for a burglary to be committed you have to enter a structure with the intention of committing a felony or a theft,” he testified. “Neither fact could I establish in this investigation that Mr. Arbery committed.”
“At no time did it appear he was interrupted and he didn’t steal anything,” he said. “So, I don’t think you can establish as a point of law that he intended to steal something if he had been in the residence multiple times and never taken anything and then he left without taking anything.”
The hearing before Glynn County Chief Magistrate Judge Wallace Harrell marked the first court appearance for the three suspects since they were charged last month.
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