From the moment the first conviction was issued in a Georgia court, a cascade of tears and screams of proof flowed throughout the country. Black parents called the children crying. Activists suffocated, accepting what they call a rare example of justice.
Recently, guns and violence on alert have been exhibited in courts from Kenosha, Wisconsin to Charlottesville, Virginia, to Brunswick, Georgia, in a country with spongy divisions over race. The murdered Amado Arbury was welcomed by political leaders and many Americans throughout the political spectrum.
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp said he hopes the verdict will help the country “advance the path of healing and reconciliation.” President Biden said the ruling showed that “the judicial system is playing that role,” but the murder of Mr. Arbury and the chilling videotape recording it are permanent to the country. He said it was a measure of racial inequality.
Widespread screams of support for the jury’s verdict for what some activists called Lynch in the 21st century are deeply two for the acquittal of the 18-year-old white Kyle Rittenhouse, who shot them deadly in anxiety. It was in stark contrast to the polarized reaction. In Kenosha following a black man’s police shooting last year.
Many conservatives accepted Mr. Rittenhaus’s acquittal last week as a victory for self-defense and gun rights, but liberals suspect that it may encourage armed vigilantism in response to protests of racial justice. I was worried.
“The Kyle Rittenhouse verdict is the United States I expect. The Arbury verdict is the United States I fight,” said Rev. Lenny Duncan, 43, a black minister in Portland, Oregon. After the murder of George Floyd, Breona Taylor, and other African Americans last year.
Convicted of all three defendants charged with Mr. Arbury’s February 2020 murder — Travis McMichael, 35; his father, Gregory McMichael, 65. And their neighbor, William Brian, 52, had little reprimand or protest.
Travis McMichael’s lawyer respected the jury’s decision, but told reporters that he would appeal to a verdict that said he was “disappointed and sad.”
“Today is a very difficult day for Travis McMichael and Greg McMichael,” said Jason Shefield, one of the lawyers, “I honestly believe that what they are doing is right.” Added.
Men are also facing the crime of federal hate crimes and are expected to bring them to trial in February.
The ruling came as a relief to some black Americans who were watching the trial with sadness and fear. Many urgently wanted to be convicted, but overwhelmingly white juries are worried about the rash of crimes in the neighborhood when their neighbors take off after Mr. Arbury with three white defendants. I was worried that I might stand by the defendant’s lawyer. I ran down the street.
“Today, I thank God for this verdict,” said Warren Stewart Jr., a black priest and political activist in Phoenix. “I started calling a few friends, and they are crying on the phone. It’s bittersweet. I’m scared because I have two black sons. This is real life for us. . “
Mr. Stewart’s 18-year-old son, Mikaia, was enthusiastic about the trial, and the family sought to balance his hopes and prayers for the conviction. It has been declared justified by the legal system.
“It happens too often and they get over it,” said Mikaia Stewart. Mr Arbury’s murder on public roads seems to support his own fear of simply going out as a young black man in the United States, he said.
Some African-Americans said the trial raised a test of how it was made because of their frayed trust in the legal system. They said the video showing how an unarmed black man was chased, cornered, and shot leaves little suspicion that Mr. Arbury’s death was a murder.
Hawk Newsam, co-founder of Black Lives Matter Greater New York, called the conviction “partial.” victory. “
Mr. Newsom said the acquittal of Mr. Rittenhaus and the conviction of Mr. Arbury’s murder in parallel in the shooting of three white men protesting the shooting by police of a black man were added to the “mixed message”.
“You can’t completely chase and kill blacks and their supporters,” he said. “But if you make it look like self-defense, you’re shot.”
In Atlanta, lawyer Kristen Stewart, who has represented a black family killed by a white police officer, held back tears as he looked back on Georgia’s verdict.
“It’s good to see the loss of racism,” said Stewart, who included the family of Walter Scott, a 50-year-old black man whose back was shot in 2015 by South Carolina police officers. Mr said. “This incident will be remembered for years. I can’t exaggerate how big this is.”
Understand the killing of Amado Aberbury
photograph. On February 23, 2020, a 25-year-old black man, Ahmaud Arbery, was shot dead after being chased by three white men while jogging near his home on the outskirts of Brunswick, Georgia. Arbery’s murder was captured in a graphic video that was widely seen by the general public.
“It would have broken me-I would have lost confidence in the system,” Stewart said if the verdict went the other way. He said the jury’s decision “shows African Americans that justice is possible.”
But only occasionally, many said. The three defendants were not arrested until a few weeks after the shooting, and Mr. Arbury’s last-moment video caused national anger and anger only once.
“They had no choice but to convict,” said 68-year-old Wilbert Dawson, who and his friends sat at Dugain’s restaurants and bars in the Old Fourth Ward, Atlanta, looking back at the verdict.
“But without the video, this wouldn’t happen,” said his friend Curtis Duren, 64. “There would have been such an uprising,” Duren said, if the man was acquitted. “It would have destroyed the moral structure of America.”
At Brunswick, local officials and activists primarily foretold the verdict. Allenbooker, the city’s commissioner, who represents the majority of Blacks in Brunswick, said he was overjoyed at Arbury’s family, admitting that he couldn’t get him back.
Bobby Henderson, co-founder of A Better Glynn, a local organization founded after Arbury’s death to promote diversity in local leadership, is pleased that Arbury’s family has been accountable. He said he did, but more work was needed “to fight the system that failed in Amode that day.”
The Brunswick Courthouse, where the trial took place, became a tearful celebration.
Outside where activists and supporters of Mr. Arbury hugged, shouted, and clasped each other’s hands in a victorious gesture, John Howard, 60, a white man in Hazlehurst, Georgia, said justice was offered. rice field.
He called the killing “lynch.” Howard …