On Tuesday, a Georgia court was read a transcript of bodycam footage that included an ex-cop telling police that he would have shot Ahmaud Arbery himself if his son had not done so.
According to VICE, Glynn County Police officer Jeff Brandeberry testified that his February 23, 2020, bodycam video showed Gregory McMichael, 64, saying that he would have shot Arbery, 25, himself “if I could have got a shot at the guy.”
The former Glynn County investigator’s son, Travis McMichael, 34, fatally shot Arbery twice in the chest with a shotgun as he jogged through the Brunswick neighborhood last year.
“To be perfectly honest with you, if I could have got a shot at the guy, I would have shot him myself. He was that violently…,” Gregory McMichael said, according to Brandeberry.
Per the bodycam transcript, Gregory McMichael also called Arbery an “a*shole” at the crime scene. Brandeberry described him as “pretty amped up” and “animated” following the shooting, CNN reported.
Gregory McMichael reportedly said he perceived Arbery as a threat. However, he did not explicitly say that he was trying to detain him when the fatal shooting occurred.
Further, Brandeberry testified that he never used the words “burglary,” “arrest,” “detain” or “trespass” when speaking about the deadly shooting — potentially discrediting the defense’s claim that the father and son, along with William Bryan Jr., 50, were conducting a lawful citizen’s arrest.
According to VICE, Glynn County detective Parker Marcy, who was also at the scene, testified Tuesday that Gregory McMichael claimed he saw at least two videos of Arbery wandering around construction sites at night. However, he never used the phrase “breaking into” and never expressed witnessing Arbery committing a crime before conducting the fatal chase.
“I’m thinking he’s either done something to somebody, somebody’s chasing him,” he allegedly told Marcy.
The McMichaels, along with William Bryan Jr., 50, are charged with malice and felony murder in Arbery’s February 23 shooting death. Bryan reportedly filmed the father and son fatally shooting Arbery, 25, as he jogged in Brunswick.
The McMichaels and Bryan are charged with malice and felony murder in Arbery’s February 23 shooting death. Bryan reportedly filmed the father and son fatally shooting Arbery as he jogged in Brunswick.
Gregory McMichael allegedly said that Arbery resembled a suspect in a series of recent burglaries in the Satilla Shores neighborhood. However, police said the only recent break-in was on January 1, when a 9mm pistol was reportedly stolen from an unlocked truck outside the McMichaels’ home.
Bryan claimed he was solely a witness but authorities alleged he used his vehicle to confine and detain Arbery in the minutes leading up to his murder.
Gregory and Travis McMichael were arrested in May, two days after a video depicting Arbery’s death went viral. Bryan and the McMichaels were initially denied bond in July.
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[Featured image: Ahmaud Arbery/handout, Gregory and Travis McMichael/Glynn County Sheriff’s Office]