In Georgia, a jury found the three white men who chased down and murdered 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery guilty of committing federal hate crimes. Ahmaud Arbery was killed exactly two years ago, on February 23, 2020. Travis McMichael, his father Gregory McMichael and their neighbor William Bryan were also found guilty of attempted kidnapping and other charges. They now face an additional life sentence; the three already received life sentences after their murder conviction in a state trial earlier this year. Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, welcomed the news but called out the Justice Department for initially offering her son’s killers a plea deal.
Wanda Cooper-Jones: “What we got today, we wouldn’t have gotten today if it wasn’t for the fight that the family took up on January the 31st. What the DOJ did today, they was made to do today. It wasn’t because of what they wanted to do; they were made to do their job today.”
Ahmaud Arbery’s father, Marcus Arbery, also spoke after Tuesday’s verdict.
Marcus Arbery Sr.: “He loved his family. He called us every day. If he had but one word to tell you, guess what that was: 'I love you, Pops. I love you, Mama.' He always told you that. Now these times you don’t hear that, I’m struggling with that every day.”