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Defense in Ahmaud Arbery case claims Arbery had history of “pretending to be a jogger”

Brian Kemp - Shooting of Ahmaud Arbery

New evidence in the case of the fatal shooting of Ahmaud Arbery by the father-son duo Gregory and Travis McMichael shows that Arbery had a history of pretending to be a jogger as a cover to commit crimes.

On February 23rd of last year, Arbery was shot and killed by the McMichaels while jogging through a neighborhood in Brunswick, Georgia. The two men involved in the shooting were sitting on their lawn when Arbery jogged passed. The two pursued Arbery because they claimed that he looked like the man suspected of multiple break-ins in the area. In a cell phone video that was made public in April of last year, the two men could be seen blocking Arbery with their white pickup truck before confronting him and shooting him. In the video there was a struggle between Arbery and Travis as Arbery attempted to pull the shotgun from McMichael’s hands. Gregory, 64, and Travis, 34, have since been charged with murder and aggravated assault and are in custody in Glynn County, Georgia. Their neighbor, William “Roddie” Bryan, who filmed the video, was also arrested, and charged with murder for trying to “confine and detain” Arbery with his vehicle.

According to newly released court documents, multiple eyewitnesses and police reports say that Arbery had a history of pretending to be a jogger when committing criminal activity. According to excerpts of the documents posted on Andy Ngo’s Twitter, in August 2018, Arbery was allegedly caught by a woman for trespassing. The woman claimed to have seen Arbery looking into her car window in her backyard. Police served Arbery a trespassing warning by Burke County officers. “When confronted by the officers about the eye-witness reports, he lied and said he had ‘gone running in the street,’ and then became aggressive, confrontational, and repeatedly threatened that he would ‘whip the officer’s a*s’ if they didn’t leave him alone,” the report said.

Another incident that took place in October 2018, Arbery and two other juveniles were caught in a vacant mobile home and when confronted by officers Arbery said he was just out jogging. According to the report, Arbery was given a misdemeanor obstruction for running when given lawful orders to stop. Due to his repeated behavior, members of the community nicknamed Arbery “The Jogger”. “In 2019 and 2020, local convenience store witness interviews reveal Mr. Arbery became known as ‘The Jogger’ for his repeated conduct and behavior of running up, stretching in front, and then entering several convenience stores where he would grab items and run out before he got caught,” the excerpt read.

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ARTICLE: DUSTIN RODGERS

POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: DAILY NEWS

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