Gregory and Travis McMichael have been charged with murder and aggravated assault in Georgia.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation arrested two men for the death of Ahmaud Arbery, a Black man who was shot in February while jogging through a neighborhood.
“On May 7th, 2020, the GBI arrested Gregory McMichael, age 64, and Travis McMichael, age 34, for the death of Ahmaud Arbery,” the bureau said in a statement. “They were both charged with murder and aggravated assault. The McMichaels were taken into custody and will be booked into the Glynn County Jail.”
The case is being investigated in conjunction with the Liberty County district attorney’s office in southeast Georgia, which has been assigned to the case over potential conflicts of interest in Glynn County.
Arbery, 25, was running through a South Georgia neighborhood about 1 p.m. on a Sunday in late February. According to police reports, the McMichaels, both white men, said they believed he looked like a suspect in a string of robberies. They reportedly grabbed their firearms, a .357 Magnum and a shotgun, pursued him in their truck, confronting him in the street.
An altercation broke out before Travis McMichael shot and killed Arbery, police said.
Graphic cellphone footage surfaced last week of the shooting, and The Guardian released audio recordings of two 911 calls that showed dispatchers responding to reports of a man, believed to be Arbery, running in the neighborhood. In one clip, a man reports a “Black male running down the street,” prompting the dispatcher to ask what the person was “doing wrong.”
The New York Times reported last month that Arbery was an avid runner who was often seen jogging around the city where he lived.
Public outcry grew after the video’s release and reports that no arrests had been made more than two months after Arbery was killed. An attorney for Arbery’s mother described the shooting as a “modern lynching in the middle of the day.”
Shortly before the father and son were arrested, Marcus Arbery, the slain man’s father, went on “PBS NewsHour” to demand justice.
“Arrest these terrible people,” he said. “Get them out, get them off the streets, before they try to lynch anybody else’s kids. ... They need to be behind bars for a long, long time.”
Marcus Arbery’s attorney Benjamin Crump added that they were putting pressure on prosecutors to “look at the case with fresh eyes” and “not to allow anything from the local officials” in light of their connection to Gregory McMichael, who previously served as a police officer and a detective for the Glynn County district attorney for more than 30 years.
Georgia police said they were also investigating the release of the cellphone video earlier this month.