One at a time on Wednesday afternoon, Travis and Greg McMichael, the son and father, and William Bryan stood in the Glyn County courtroom to hear they had been convicted of murdering Ahmaud Arbery. The self-defense measure that had saved Kyle Rittenhouse from conviction in Kenosha was ineffective for the men in Georgia.
The prosecutors had argued that the defendants, three white men, provoked the confrontation when the McMichaels’ grabbed guns and jumped in a pickup truck and pursued the 25-year-old Black man, running through the Satilla Shores neighborhood near Brunswick. Bryan followed behind them in his pickup truck and helped cut off Arbery, all the while recording the incident on his cellphone.
It was his video that would be critical evidence in their convictions, and on at least two occasions the jurors, with only one Black person, asked to view and to hear a 911 phone call. Along with self-defense stated that the men were merely attempting to make a citizens’ arrest, but this failed to persuade the jurors in bringing guilty verdicts on all nine counts to Travis, who fired the gun, and guilty charges on eight of nine counts against Gregory McMichael, and seven of nine against Bryan.