Two of the men convicted for killing Ahmaud Arbery have reportedly agreed to a plea deal with prosecutors working on the federal hate crime case against them.
NBC News reported that prosecutors filed noticed on Sunday to the U.S. District Court in Brunswick, Georgia, announcing the plea deals, though the details of those deals were not revealed. The outlet noted that the plea deals would have to be approved by the court, which could be influenced by Arbery’s parents, who are opposed to any sort of deal.
The filings related to Travis McMichael and his father Gregory, who chased down Arbery on February 23, 2020, and fatally shot him, claiming they believed he was the man responsible for a string of recent home burglaries in the area and that they were attempting a citizens’ arrest.
Arbery’s parents, Marcus Arbery and Wanda Cooper Jones said they were “vehemently against this deal,” believing it could mean the McMichaels would be able to serve their time for both cases in a “preferred” federal prison, NBC reported.
“This proposed plea is a huge accommodation to the men who hunted down and murdered Ahmaud Arbery,” the two said in their statement, which was obtained by WTLV.
The Daily Wire reported in November 2021 that the McMichaels were found guilty of felony murder as well as other charges:
A third defendant, William “Roddie” Bryan, was found not guilty on one count of felony murder but guilty on other counts of felony murder.
Gregory McMichael, 65, Travis McMichael, 35 — who are father and son — and William “Roddie” Bryan, 52 — a neighbor — were found guilty of various charges. In addition to felony murder, Travis McMichael was also found guilty of malice murder, aggravated assault, and false imprisonment.
Gregory McMichael was also found not guilty of malice murder, but guilty of felony murder, aggravated assault, and false imprisonment; Bryan was also found guilty of one count of aggravated assault as well as false imprisonment.
The men were convicted on January 7, 2022, The Daily Wire reported. The McMichaels were sentenced to life I prison without the possibility of parole, while Bryan was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
“During the trial, the jury watched video of Arbery roaming around a vacant property with a house under construction. In the moments after Arbery left the property, he was chased by three white male residents of the neighborhood. Travis McMichael, 35, and his father Gregory McMichael, 66, armed themselves with guns and pursued Arbery in a pickup truck after he ran past their yard, which was several houses down from the unfinished property. Bryan, 52, followed Arbery in another car. Arbery then had a confrontation with Travis McMichael, who shot Arbery as he ran in front of the pickup truck,” The Daily Wire reported.
Judge Timothy Walmsley, who sentenced the three men, made the courtroom sit in silence for one minute to put “into context” how long the men chased Arbery before ultimately killing him.
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