Ahmaud Arbery's Parents React to Verdicts in His Murder Case: 'Never Thought This Day Would Come'
Ahmaud Arbery's parents are speaking out about the guilty verdicts of the three men who killed their son.
All three men charged — Greg McMichael, 67; his son Travis McMichael, 35; and neighbor William "Roddie" Bryan, 52 — were found guilty for the murder of Arbery, a Black jogger they believed to be a burglar running on a suburban Georgia street. They pursued and cornered him with their pickups on Feb. 23, 2020, before a physical confrontation in which one of the men fatally shot the unarmed Arbery. He was 25.
Each faced nine criminal charges, according to the indictment. Travis, who pulled the trigger and shot Arbery three times, was convicted on all of them: one count of malice murder, which alleges intent to kill; four counts of felony murder, which alleges an action that causes a death; two counts of aggravated assault; one count of false imprisonment; and one count of criminal attempt to commit a felony.
His father Greg was cleared of only the malice murder charge, and found guilty of the rest. Bryan was cleared of malice murder and one felony murder charge, as well as one of the aggravated assault charges. But the 12 jurors found him liable for all the other charges.
All three now face life in prison when sentenced.
Arbery's mother Wanda Cooper-Jones said after the verdicts Wednesday, according to The New York Times, "To tell you the truth, I never saw this day back in 2020. I never thought this day would come, but God is good. Thank you. Thank you for those who marched, those who prayed."
"He will now rest in peace," she added, per ABC News, as Arbery's dad Marcus Arbery Sr., said, "Today is a good day."
He added, according to Huffington Post, "I don't want to see no daddy watch their kid get lynched and shot down like that. It's all our problem … let's keep fighting, let's keep doing and making this place a better place for all human beings."
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Arbery was shot three times and "died of multiple shotgun wounds sustained during a struggle for the shotgun," said an autopsy report obtained by PEOPLE.
The report also revealed that Arbery sustained two close-range gunshot wounds in the chest, as well as a graze wound on his right wrist. The Georgia Bureau of Investigations review of Arbery's death — which was not requested until May 5, 2020, by District Attorney Tom Durden after two other district attorneys recused themselves from the case — listed Arbery's manner of death as homicide, and led to the arrests of the McMichaels two days later.