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Travis McMichael Allegedly Called Ahmaud Arbery a ‘Fucking N-----’ After Shooting Him

William “Roddie” Bryan Jr., who participated in chasing Arbery and filmed the encounter, overheard Travis, according to a state investigator.
June 4, 2020, 3:31pm
​Cover: This Thursday, May 7, 2020, photo provided by the Glynn County Detention Center, in Georgia, shows Travis McMichael. (Glynn County Detention Center via AP)​

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Moments after shooting Ahmaud Arbery, Travis McMichael was overheard calling the young black man a “fucking n-----” as he lay dying on the pavement, according to testimony Thursday from the state law enforcement agent overseeing the case.

Richard Dial, a special agent for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and lead investigator in Arbery’s case, said during a probable cause hearing Thursday that William “Roddie” Bryan Jr., who participated in the three-man chase that led to Arbery’s February death, overheard Travis call the 25-year-old black man the slur. The comment came as the men were awaiting police, according to Dial.

Arbery was jogging around the suburban Georgia neighborhood of Satilla Shores on Feb. 23 when Greg McMichael, Travis’ father, determined he was a burglary suspect. He and Travis had apparently seen recent surveillance video of Arbery entering a home that was under construction nearby, although the owner of that home said nothing was ever stolen.

Greg, 64, told police that he didn’t know whether Arbery had stolen anything but had a “gut feeling” that he was a suspect, according to Dial. Upon seeing Arbery “hauling ass” down their road one February afternoon, Greg called out to Travis, 34, to help follow Arbery.

The two men armed themselves with guns and began to chase Arbery in their truck, according to a police report from that day. Bryan, who lived nearby but didn’t know the McMichaels well, followed behind in his truck, too, and filmed the incident on his cell-phone.

The McMichaels said they were commanding Arbery to “stop” throughout, but they did not call 911 before they started pursuing him, Dial said Thursday.

Both Bryan and the McMichaels tried to block Arbery with their vehicles several times and reroute his path toward them so they could “detain” him, Dial said, as Arbery tried to run away.

Travis eventually jumped out of the vehicle and a struggle with Arbery ensued. He shot Arbery three times with his shotgun in broad daylight — twice in the chest, once in the wrist. Greg McMichael told officers he was telling Travis not to shoot, according to Dial.

Bryan’s video captured Arbery’s final moments, and only a brief version of it has been seen online. The video shows Arbery and Travis fighting for control of the gun, as shots ring out. Arbery strikes Travis before eventually falling to the ground, his shirt saturated with blood.

Arbery was an avid runner, according to family members. The owner of the home that was under-construction even suggested he may have come onto the property to get water during his exercise routine. But suspicious residents often discussed the home and those who entered it on a private Facebook page, Dial said Thursday.

McMichael was a retired police officer and investigator for the county’s district attorney. In fact, he was carrying a police-issued revolver during the encounter with Arbery. Local police on at least one occasion had told the homeowner to rely on McMichael for help if any trespassers came onto the vacant property.

On May 7, the McMichaels were arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and charged with murder and aggravated assault after months of pleading from Arbery’s family, and the case changing prosecutors over apparent conflicts of interest due to Greg McMichael’s long law enforcement career.

Bryan, 50, was later arrested on May 21 and charged with felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.

Cover: This Thursday, May 7, 2020, photo provided by the Glynn County Detention Center, in Georgia, shows Travis McMichael. (Glynn County Detention Center via AP)

This article originally appeared on VICE US.