In February 2020, two armed white men in a pickup truck chased down 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery while he was jogging in Brunswick, Georgia. With the help of a third man, they boxed in Arbery — who was Black — and confronted him, shooting him point-blank. On Wednesday, a grand jury indicted those three men on federal hate-crime charges, adding to the murder charges the state announced last spring.
“He was killed because of hate. It was initiated by hate,” Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, said of the indictment, which is well over a year in the making. “We look at this as one step closer to justice for Ahmaud.”
According to the Department of Justice, Travis McMichael; his father, Gregory, a former cop; and William “Roddie” Bryan face one count each of interference with rights as well as one count each of attempted kidnapping. The McMichaels also face charges for “using, carrying, and brandishing — and in Travis’s case, discharging — a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.”