The decision to deny bond to the Georgia father and son charged in the February shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery hinged on a piece of evidence already viewed by millions, reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Two days of testimony from friends and family attesting to the character of Greg and Travis McMichael couldn’t compete with their actions in the cellphone video depicting the final moments of Arbery’s life. Judge Timothy Walmsley said the footage shows the McMichaels pose a threat to the community. They had no way of knowing if Arbery was responsible for the burglaries they was suspected him of, the judge concluded.
“And that somehow resulted in individuals thinking it was appropriate to block that individual’s path of travel, shoulder a firearm in order to get him to stop,” Walmsley said. “There is a significant danger to all of those actions. Individuals who do that need to be aware of the fact they can end up exactly where (the McMichaels) are now.” The McMichaels told police they were convinced Arbery had burglarized a nearby house under construction. Prosecutors say Arbery was just out jogging the day of the fatal February encounter and stole nothing. Laura Hogue, representing Greg McMichael, will try to appeal to the state Supreme Court. “This case, despite all that we’ve heard, is about whether Greg McMichael on Feb. 23 was authorized to protect his neighborhood from crime the way that he did,” she said.