One of two men with federal hate crime defense in murder Ahmaud Arbery was denied by a judge last week who decided to proceed with the trial rather than seek a new settlement with prosecutors, court documents showed on Thursday.
Attorneys for Gregory McMichael and federal prosecutors filed a joint notice withdrawing McMichael’s plea agreement, saying the agreement was “null and void” and that both parties were “ready to hear the verdict.” trial”, reaffirming his original plea.
The lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Brunswick, Georgia, also found that a plea alter hearing scheduled for Friday for McMichael was dropped.
McMichael, 66, and his son Travis, 36, were both sentenced to life in prison by state court last month without parole for murder and other counts in the shotgun murder. in February 2020 by Arbery, 25 years old.
A co-defendant, 52-year-old neighbor William “Roddie” Bryan, was sentenced to life in prison with eligibility for parole after 30 years. All three men are white.
Arbery, who was black, was fatally shot by the younger McMichael after all three defendants chased him in a pickup as he jogged through the suburban neighborhood they shared.
Ahmaud Arbery murder trial: All 3 defendants guilty of unarmed black murder
The jury rejected claims by McMichaels attorneys that their client was seeking to arrest a citizen for Arbery, who they suspected of criminal activity and acted in self-defence when confronted he.
The father and son later reached an agreement with the United States Attorney’s Office in southern Georgia to plead guilty to federal charges of hate crimes and receive a 30-year sentence.
As part of the settlement, prosecutors agreed to recommend that the defendants be sent to federal prison for 30 years before being sent back to the Georgia prison system, where conditions are considered harsher. compared to federal prison.
But after outcry from Arbery’s mother, last week U.S. District Judge Lisa Wood took the rare step of dismissing the terms of the plea agreement at a hearing for the young McMichael, though it wasn’t the first time he’d admitted that he pursued Arbery for the sake of his race.
Both McMichaels were scheduled to return to court on Friday to formally plead guilty. Court records indicate that only his son will appear for that hearing as the father formally withdrew his plea agreement on Thursday.
It is not yet clear whether Travis McMichael will seek a new plea agreement accepted by the judge. There was no indication in court whether the third defendant, Bryan, was considering a plea agreement.
(Reporting by Steve Gorman in Los Angeles. Editing by Gerry Doyle)
https://globalnews.ca/news/8594304/ahamud-arbery-killer-hate-crime-plea/ Murderer Ahamud Arbery pleads not guilty to hate crime charges after plea deal is denied – National