The three men charged with murdering Ahmaud Arbery have been found guilty.
The verdict comes after almost three weeks of proceedings in Glynn County, Georgia, where Travis McMichael, his father Gregory McMichael, and neighbor William Bryan Jr. faced charges consisting of felony murder, malice murder, criminal attempt to commit a felony, false imprisonment, and aggravated assault.
The men chased Ahmaud Arbery with their vehicles as the 25-year-old was running in the Satilla Shores neighborhood in Brunswick, Georgia on February, 23, 2020.
The McMichael family armed themselves before going after Arbery, and Bryan took cellphone video of the moment Travis McMichael fatally shot Arbery.
Without the footage going public, it’s doubtful the case would have even gone to trial.
WATCH: Essence spoke with attorney Lee Merritt about the viral footage in the Ahmaud Arbery case
Their defense that the chase stemmed from a concern about burglaries in the neighborhood was repeatedly undermined by lead prosecutor Linda Dunikoski. She presented evidence that the men knew Arbery was not a suspect of any burglaries or any other crime around the time that Travis McMichael fatally shot him.
Travis McMichael’s testimony last week may have unofficially put the case to rest, when he conceded that Arbery was “just running,” when the trio decided to go after him. McMichael’s self-defense argument was further weakened when he said that Arbery hadn’t shown a weapon or spoken to him at all before he raised his shotgun and pointed it at Arbery.
“All he’s done is run away from you, and you pulled out a shotgun and pointed it at him,” Dunikoski said to him during cross examination.
The jury found Bryan Jr. guilty of felony murder and faces life in prison without parole. He was acquitted of the malice murder charge.
Gregory McMichael has been found guilty of felony murder and faces a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole.
His son Travis McMichael was convicted of one count of malice murder and four counts of felony murder. Travis McMichael, who pulled the trigger that killed Arbery, also faces life in prison without parole.