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Judge: Ahmaud Arbery's past troubles irrelevant to trial

Ahmaud Arbery Hate Crimes
Posted at 2:44 PM, Sep 01, 2021

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A Georgia judge says he won't allow attorneys for the men charged with killing Ahmaud Arbery to use evidence of the slain Black man's troubled past when they stand trial for murder.

Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley said in a written order that the victim's character isn't relevant or admissible in a murder case.

Father and son Gregory and Travis McMichael and their neighbor William "Roddie" Bryan face trial this fall in the February 2020 slaying.

They chased and shot Arbery after seeing him running in their neighborhood in coastal Glynn County.

Defense attorneys say the men suspected Arbery was a burglar and sought to make a citizen's arrest.

They wanted the jury to know of Arbery's two prior arrests.

In June, the Cobb County District Attorney posted on social mediathat the three men were charged on the following counts: malice murder, felony murder (four counts), aggravated assault (two counts), false imprisonment, and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.

In early May, Gregory and Travis McMichael were arrested two days after the filmed encounter became public.

Bryan allegedly filmed the encounter between Arbery and the McMichaels.

The three men have pled not guilty and are being held in jail without bond.