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THE SUSPICIOUS KILLING OF AHMAUD ARBERY

UPDATE: After my post was queued for release, both McMichael men, father and son, were arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation on charges of murder and aggravated assault. And, unfortunately, it appears that one of the nation’s prominent “Travon Martin” media-whore/race-baiter attorneys “helicoptered” in to represent the family of the slain man. As always, one wonders who is paying his fees and expenses and who might be coordinating the media campaign – complete with professional tee-shirts, signage, and an attorney-leaked video to the media?

gbi

On May 7th, 2020, the GBI arrested Gregory McMichael, age 64, and Travis McMichael, age 34, for the death of Ahmaud Arbery.  They were both charged with murder and aggravated assault.  The McMichaels were taken into custody and will be booked into the Glynn County Jail.

On February 23, 2020, Ahmaud Arbery was in the Satilla Shores neighborhood in Brunswick, GA when both Gregory and Travis McMichael confronted Arbery with two firearms.  During the encounter, Travis McMichael shot and killed Arbery.

This case is being investigated in partnership with District Attorney Tom Durden.

On May 5th, 2020, District Attorney Tom Durden formally requested the GBI investigate the death of Ahmaud Arbery.  The Kingsland Office initiated an investigation on May 6th, 2020.

On April 29th, 2020, the Glynn County Police Department (GCPD) requested that the GBI investigate allegations of threats against GCPD and individuals involved in the active investigation.

On the morning of May 5th, 2020, GCPD requested the GBI investigate the public release of video related to Arbery’s death.

These investigations are all active and ongoing.  

Original post…

Already, I have received a number of messages from the anti-gun crowd seeking to politicize what appears to be a tragic killing of a Georgia resident under questionable circumstances.

However, after reading the police report and the district attorney’s opinion on whether to arrest and charge the armed men, it is no longer a simple black-and-white issue.

The issues I am struggling with are: one, does a good faith belief that an individual committed a crime to justify armed pursuit; two, would the assailants have taken the same action had the individual running down the street been white; and three, why wouldn’t the District Attorney immediately charge the individuals who acted under questionable circumstances?

The police report…

Glynn County Police Department
Public Release Incident Report for G20-11303

Subject:   Shots fired
Officer:    Brandeberry #128
Date:        02/23/2020

Report:

On Sunday, February 23, 2020 I responded to the intersection of Satilla Drive and Holmes Drive in reference to shots fired. While in route I was advised there were shots fired and a male on the ground "bleeding out." A short time later I was advised the male on the ground was deceased .

Upon my arrival I observed Officer Minshew (#184) setting up a perimeter. I began speaking with Gregory McMichael who was a witness to the incident. McMichael stated there have been several Break-ins in the neighborhood and further the suspect was caught on surveillance video. McMichael stated he was in his front yard and saw the suspect from the break-ins " hauling ass" down Satilla Drive toward Burford Drive. McMichael stated he then ran inside his house and called to Travis (McMichael ) and said "Travis the guy is running down the street lets go " . McMichael stated he went to his bedroom and grabbed his .357 Magnum and Travis grabbed his shotgun because they "didn't know if the male was armed or not". Michael stated "the other night" they saw the same male and he stuck his hand down his pants which lead them to believe the male was armed

McMichael stated he and Travis got in the truck and drove down Satilla Drive toward Burford Drive McMichael stated when they arrived at the intersection of Satilla Drive and Holmes Drive, they saw the unidentified male running down Burford drive McMichael then stated Travis drive down Burford and attempted to cut off the male. McMichael stated the unidentified male turned around and began running back the direction from which he came from and "Roddy" attempted to block him which was unsuccessful. Michael stated he then jumped into the bed of the truck and he and Travis continued to Holmes in an attempt to intercept him.

McMichael stated they saw the unidentified male and shouted "stop, stop, we want to talk to you". Michael stated they pulled up beside the male and shouted stop again at which time Travis exited the truck with the shotgun. McMichael stated the unidentified male began to violently attack Travis and the two men then started fighting over the shotgun at which point Travis fired a shot and then a second later there was a second shot. Michael stated the male fell face down on the pavement with his hand under his body. McMichael stated he rolled the man over to see if the male had a weapon.

I observed blood on McMichael's hands from rolling the unidentified male over. Photographs were taken of McMichaels hands and were uploaded to Spillman under property number 20-03176.

My Axon body camara was on while I was on scene and the video has been uploaded into Spillman under property number 20-03179. Glynn County Coroner was notified and Coroner Christy Rozier arrived on scene. Coroner Rozier pronounced time of death to be 13:46. Glynn County CID was called to the scene and upon their arrival the scene was turned over to them.

The District Attorney’s findings…

OFFICE OF THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY - WAYCROSS JUDICIAL CIRCUIT

My office received the Arbery autopsy report [dated 4/1/2020] yesterday and have reviewed it yesterday and this morning . We were waiting on this important evidentiary article before finalizing our opinions.

First,
I am the current elected District Attorney for the Waycross Circuit , I have worked as a criminal prosecutor for some 36 years. As an Assistant District Attorney in Waycross and Brunswick, as Chief Assistant in Waycross for 20 years and served as the District Attorney the last 5 years; I have been actively involved in over 100 murder cases and assisted other prosecutors with at least 100 more. I have no idea how many Aggravated Assault cases involving gunshots and wounds of all types; Plus I have attended countless schools, classes and seminars on criminal prosecution and criminal acts and evidence. Myself and one of my Senior Trial Attorneys have reviewed the evidence extensively and concur on all points.

Second ,
As to the case at hand : It is my professional belief the autopsy confirms what we had already viewed as shown in the video tape, with the photographs & from the witness statements taken immediately at the scene. The autopsy supports the initial opinion we gave you on February 24th, 2020 at the briefing room in the Glynn County Police Department after reviewing the evidence you had at that time. We do not see grounds for an arrest of any of the three parties

Third ,
It appears Travis McMichael, Greg McMichael , and Bryan William were following, in ‘hot pursuit', a burglary suspect, with solid first hand probable cause, in their neighborhood, and asking/telling him to stop. It appears their intent was to stop and hold this criminal suspect until law enforcement arrived. Under Georgia Law this is perfectly legal,

[OCS: Whether or not that there was a true probable cause for a hot pursuit based on the belief of an individual should be a matter for the courts.]

[OCS: Georgia legal citation omitted]

Fourth,
It clearly appears Travis McMichael and Greg McMichael had firearms being carried in an open fashion. The investigation shows neither of them to be convicted felons or under felony supervision, they were in a motor vehicle owned by Travis McMichael. Under Georgia Law this is legal open carry.

[OCS: Georgia legal citation omitted]

Fifth,
The video made by William Bryan clearly shows the shooting in real time. From said video it appears Ahmaud Arbery was running along the right side of the McMichael truck then abruptly turns 90 degrees to the left and attacks Travis McMichael who was standing at the front left corner of the truck. A brief skirmish ensues in which it appear Arbery strikes McMichael and appears to grab the shotgun and pull it from McMichael. The 1st shot is through Arbery's right hand palm which is consistent with him grabbing and pulling the shotgun at the barrel tip, the 2nd and 3rd wounds are consistent with the struggle for the shotgun as depicted in the video, the angle of the 2nd shot with the rear of the buttstock being pushed away and down from the fight are also consistent with the upward angle of blood plume shown in the video and that McMichael was attempting to push the gun away from Arbe1y while Arbery was pulling it toward himself. The 3rd shot too appears to be in a struggle over the gun. The angle of the shots and the video show this was from the beginning or almost immediately became-- a fight over the shotgun. Given the fact Arbery initiated the fight, at the point Arbery grabbed the shotgun, under Georgia Law, McMichael was allowed to use deadly force to protect himself. Just as importantly, while we know McMichael had his finger on the trigger, we do not know who caused the firings. Arbery would only had to pull the shotgun approximately 1/16th to 1/8th of one inch to fire the weapon himself and in the height of an altercation this is entirely possible. Arbery's mental health records & prior convictions help explain his apparent aggressive nature and his possible thought pattern to attack an armed man.

[I would suggest that a court examine whether Arbery deliberately initiated a fight or was acting in self-defense against the armed assailant confronting him. Certainly, without a doubt, Arbery had reason to fear for his life.

Citing Arbery’s prior convictions and mental health records to justify the present action appears unjustified and the matter should also be left to the courts.]

For the above and foregoing reasons, it is our conclusion there is insufficient probable cause to issue arrest warrants at this time.

Did anyone else notice the striking similarity of this case to the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case in Florida where Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder under similar circumstances?

 

Other than saying that I was not on scene nor do I have any special information other than that reported by the media, I can only say…

According to my training by certified firearms instructors, a responsible gun owner, and a lifetime member of the NRA (Patron Level), it is my belief that you never use a firearm unless life is being jeopardized. That there are no circumstances that warrant an armed pursuit of any suspect, especially off your property, unless the suspect is armed and has put life in immediate danger or you have a reasonable belief that the individual is likely to immediately harm others in your present vicinity. And, that there is no suspected or perpetrated property crime that justifies confronting an individual with a weapon unless your life is at risk. The fact that property, but not life. can be replaced is the underlying common sense that should inform your actions.

But, then again, I live in the State of California which is likely to prosecute even those who use a firearm in self-defense and this is a Georgia case where the law is quite different and may favor those who take more aggressive action.

From what I have seen in the video, it is my belief that the individuals who gave chase to another individual should be investigated and charged with second-degree murder (murder without premeditation or malice) and the matter decided by the courts. The fact that the chased individual may have struggled to disarm one of the assailants might be viewed as an act of self-defense.

In my mind, there can be no acceptable justification or explanation for the actions of the armed individuals in this matter – other than they were following local customs and practices.  Likewise, there can be no acceptable justification or explanation of why the on-scene law enforcement officers did not take the individuals into custody and hold them on suspicion of second-degree murder while the local district attorney reviewed the police reports and available evidence.

Bottom line…

In my mind, this unfortunate case is not a clear-cut racial matter – an individual is dead and the proximate cause is clearly defined – nor a case that should be politicized by the usual race-baiting activists and attorneys seeking media attention and a chunk of settlement money.

As for a charge of profiling and all of its racial implications, that is for the courts to decide in an adversarial manner.

The death of any individual is a sad and solemn event. Pray for the individual and their grieving family and friends. Leave the matter not to the corrupt mainstream media looking for sensational content to drive their monetized audience, but to the appropriate law enforcement agencies and a court of competent jurisdiction. Since it is my belief that this is clearly a matter for the courts, protests appear to be justified as the non-prosecution of the individuals involved may shock the conscience and sensibilities of the community.

And, if this matter cannot be resolved equitably at the state level in Georgia, it should be pursued federally as a civil rights violation.

-- steve


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

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