The New York Times
The New York Times 18 May 2020

Retracing Ahmaud Arbery's Final Minutes: What Videos And 911 Calls Show

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Using security footage, cellphone video, 911 calls and police reports, The Times has reconstructed the 12 minutes before Ahmaud Arbery was shot dead in Georgia on Feb. 23.


American protestors are marching in Ahmaud Arbery's final footsteps, demanding justice for this 25-year-old black man shot dead by two white men while he was jogging in Georgia in February.
William Roddie Bryan, who recorded the final seconds of Ahmaud Arbery's life, is now facing two charges in connection with the 25-year-old's death. Arrest warrants say Bryan tried to block Arbery's path with his vehicle, though Bryan's attorney says he was a bystander and "committed no crime."
Former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Anquan Boldin joins First Take and discusses the significance of Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady joining with other athletes to sign a letter calling for a federal investigation on Ahmaud Arbery's case.
#FirstTake

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Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman react to Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady and other pro athletes joining together call attention to Ahmaud Arbery's case.
#FirstTake

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… show captions ↓
In February, 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery
was shot dead in the south Georgia neighborhood
of Satilla Shores.
In the two months that followed,
no arrests were made.
But local residents and lawmakers
protested what they said was a deadly combination
of racial profiling and flawed self-defense laws.
“When they stop you, make sure you got your cameras on.
Make sure you got a video.”
Police did eventually arrest 2 suspects,
but it was days after this video of the fatal shooting emerged.
Gregory McMichael and his son Travis
were charged with murder and aggravated assault.
The case has reignited the national debate
over racial violence.
“I’m sure you saw the news about Ahmaud Arbery.”
“It looks like murder.”
“The American public saw the video.”
What exactly happened in the last moments
of Mr. Arbery’s life?
Using security camera footage, cellphone video,
and 911 calls and logs,
The Times has reconstructed the critical 12 minutes
from when Mr. Arbery appeared on Satilla Drive
to his death, less than 300 yards away.
It’s around 1 p.m. on Feb. 23
when Ahmaud Arbery is out, less than 2 miles from his home.
A security camera at 219 Satilla Drive is recording
when Mr. Arbery enters the frame at around 1:04 p.m.
He may have been jogging in the area,
but he stops on the front lawn of 220 Satilla,
a house being built across the street.
Arbery glances around and wanders into the open construction site.
Inside, security footage briefly captures him looking around.
Meanwhile outside, a neighbor walks from Jones Road
towards Satilla Drive
and calls 911.
The neighbor waits by the street corner.
He will later tell the dispatcher
that Arbery resembles a recent trespasser in the area.
On multiple occasions before Feb. 23,
several trespassers were caught
on camera at 220 Satilla.
The owner routinely alerted the police.
On four occasions, what appears to be the same man
was filmed.
It’s unclear if this was Arbery,
but even if it were, this does not justify
his shooting by neighbors outside on the street.
The site’s owner says nothing was ever
stolen from the house during these incidents
or on Feb. 23, and no property was ever damaged.
But neighbors were aware of the trespasses
and the community was on alert.
Now, back to the day in question.
It’s 1:08 p.m. and Arbery is walking around
inside the house.
Four minutes after he entered, he walks out and runs off.
In the top corner of the security footage,
we can see down the street
to 230 Satilla, the home of Travis McMichael.
At 1:10 p.m., Travis and his father, Gregory,
grab their guns, jump in a white truck,
and leave the house to pursue Mr. Arbery.
We don’t have footage showing the next 3 minutes,
but testimony Gregory McMichael
gave police at the scene, and interviews
by another witness, Roddy Bryan, indicate what happened.
Gregory and Travis McMichael follow Arbery
onto Burford Road.
Their neighbor Roddy Bryan sees
the pursuit, gets in his car and follows.
The McMichaels try to cut Arbery off.
Arbery doubles back and passes them.
Bryan tries to block Arbery, but Arbery runs past him
and toward Holmes Road.
Gregory McMichael climbs from the cab
to the bed of the truck armed with a handgun.
We don’t know exactly what happens next.
But Bryan and the McMichaels end up
following Arbery on Holmes Road.
And we next see Arbery at 1:14 p.m. running back down
Holmes Road away from Roddy Bryan
and toward the McMichaels.
Roddy Bryan is filming and — a warning — these scenes
are distressing.
Gregory McMichael dials 911 at this time.
Let’s watch this back and break down what happens.
This is Arbery.
He has been running from the vehicles
for almost 4 minutes.
Travis is standing by the driver’s side of the truck,
armed with a shotgun.
Gregory is in the bed of the truck on the 911 call.
Arbery doesn’t know where to run.
He veers right, then left and then
darts around the right side of the vehicle.
Arbery comes around the front of the truck.
We see his white T-shirt through the windshield
and here is Travis now leaning toward him.
This is the instant the first shot is fired.
Arbery is hit in the chest, his right lung, ribs,
and sternum are injured.
The two men wrestle over the gun.
Gregory shouts: “Travis!”
Arbery punches Travis.
In the back of the truck,
Gregory drops the cellphone.
A second blast goes off out of frame.
But we see the shotgun smoke here.
Arbery is heavily bleeding.
He throws another punch.
Travis fires a final shot,
which hits Arbery in his left upper chest.
Travis walks away holding his gun.
Gregory gets off the truck clutching his .357 Magnum.
According to the police report,
Gregory rolled Arbery over to see if he had a weapon.
He did not.
Police officers arrive within seconds of the shooting,
and a minute or so later
at 1:16 p.m., Police Officer R. Minshew reports:
Two subjects on Holmes Road.
Shots fired.
Male on ground bleeding out.
The police took Gregory McMichael’s testimony
and let the two men go.
But now the McMichaels both face serious charges.
Hi, this is Malachy and I reported this story.
For transparency, a note about the security footage
used in this video, which was first published
by The Atlanta Journal Constitution.
The time code you see here is incorrect.
We know this because we lined up what we see
in this video with what we hear in two 911 calls
and we confirmed the time of those calls.
These details and police logs also allowed us
to determine that Gregory McMichael called
911 from his son’s phone just before
the fatal shooting.
So in this video, we used the real time
that events happened.
Thank you for watching.

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