The man who filmed the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery in Brunswick, Georgia, in February has been arrested and charged with murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced Thursday.
William “Roddie” Bryan Jr, 50, was following Arbery as he jogged through the Satilla Shores neighborhood, filming as Arbery came upon the parked truck belonging to Gregory and Travis McMichael, the father and son who have already been charged in the shooting, as CrimeOnline previously reported.
The McMichaels say they believed Arbery was a burglar when they saw him jogging through their neighborhood and enlisted Bryan when they decided to go after him. With Bryan filming as Arbery ran up to the McMichaels’s truck, Travis McMichael, holding a shotgun, scuffles with Arbery and shoots him at least twice.
The McMichaels told police they believed Arbery was a suspect responsible for a string of burglaries in the coastal Georgia community, but Glynn County Sheriff’s records showed that the only burglary that occurred in the weeks leading up to the shooting was a stolen gun from an unlocked truck parked in front of McMichael’s home.
The McMichaels were arrested on May 7 after two months of delays as two different prosecutors recused themselves because Gregory McMichael is a former deputy sheriff, who retired in 2019 rather than complete several trainings he had missed, and a former investigator in the Glynn County prosecutor’s officer.
The release of Bryan’s 36-second video showing the shooting sparked national outrage and led to the third district attorney on the case, Tom Durden, to ask the GBI to look into it. The GBI took 36 hours to arrest the McMichaels. Last week, an attorney to initial said he had leaked to video to a local radio station said it was in fact Gregory McMichael who did so because he thought it would prove his version of events. Instead, it brought protests to Brunswick.
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[Featured image: Ahmaud Arbery/handout, Gregory and Travis McMichael/Glynn County Sheriff’s Office]