Trial Notes 17 November 2021 Ahmaud Arbery Case: “suicide by citizen’s arrest.”

17 November 2021

Trial Notes

Motions are being heard about directed verdicts and dropping charges against the three defendants in the Ahmaud Arbery case.

  • It is standard for defense attorneys to request a directed verdict to drop all charges and free their clients.  It is rarely granted.
  • Hogue (male) is trying to separate individual crimes (false imprisonment and shooting) and individual locations (what happened on one street as opposed to what happened on another).
  • The state is arguing, citing a recent Georgia Supreme court (GSC) decision, that all these events were part of the same series of actions.  The GSC decision, evidently prevents the state from charging separate felonies that were committed as part of the same series of events. 
  • It should come as no surprise that William Bryan attorney, Kevin Gough, is threatening (once again) severance of Bryan’s case from the case against the other two.
  • Gough is also claiming that the death of Ahmaud Arbery was “suicide by Citizen’s Arrest” implying that Mr. Arbery was responsible for his own death.
  • The prosecution agreed to leave race out of the case.  I’m not a lawyer and I can see both sides of the argument of whether to include this evidence, but excluding it certainly causes problems.
  • The defense attorney for Greg McMichael is arguing that the charge of malice murder should be thrown out because there is no evidence to support it.  But, Bryan in his statement to GBI agent Dial said that Travis McMichael stood over the body of Ahmaud Arbery and said “F…ing ni…er.” 
  • Consistent with the sentiment expressed in that excited utterance, one of the themes of the defense is that Ahmaud Arbery is responsible for his own death.
  • If Mr. Arbery had run in a different direction, had stopped, had spoken, had run through a yard, etc. he would have had no problem.  As Travis McMichaels said, it’s the victim’s fault.

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