BRUNSWICK, Ga. (WSAV) – More demonstrators took to the steps of the Glynn County Courthouse Monday as closing arguments were underway in the trial over Ahmaud Arbery’s death.
Multiple organizations gathered in Brunswick calling for justice for Arbery and his family.
Greg McMichael, his son Travis McMichael and their neighbor William “Roddie” Bryan Jr. are charged with malice and felony murder in the 2020 killing of Arbery.
The prosecution said Monday that the three white defendants chased Arbery solely “because he was a Black man running down the street” and the defense repeatedly blamed Arbery for his own death.
“Until we get a conviction, this is never over and history will repeat itself until we start teaching our children to stand up, to understand their rules and regulations,” said Mikhail Muhammad of the New Black Panther Party.
“The nation is on edge in this hour,” said Malik Shabazz, president of Black Lawyers for Justice. “America is one edge and the nation is on edge as this jury is ready to deliberate.”
The sheriff said at least 250 people took part in Monday’s rally — some armed with guns, others with signs and megaphones — but it was mostly peaceful.
“We are at a critical and crucial moment,” Shabazz said. “I couldn’t tell whether it was 2021 or 1921.
“Every stereotype, every bias, every wrongful presumption that could be presented against Ahmaud Arbery was presented by defense counsel.”
Along with justice for Arbery, demonstrators say they want to see an end to systemic racism.
“At stake here, number one, the value of Black life in this county and in this state,” Shabazz said. “What is the value of Black life in this county and in this state? It is very much hanging in the balance right now.”
In response to Monday’s rally, defense attorney Kevin Gough, who represents Bryan, filed his seventh motion for a mistrial, comparing demonstrators to a mob.
The judge denied his request.
Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley did instruct the jury to be moved from an external room to an internal room in the courthouse as demonstrators marched around the building.
Closing arguments are set to continue Tuesday starting at 8:30 a.m.