GBI arrest suspect for threat to Ahmaud Arbery demonstrations

Jail inmate RaShawn Smith.
Jail inmate RaShawn Smith. (Liberty County Sheriff's Office)

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said it has learned of a Facebook post that contains a threat to future demonstrations related to the Ahmaud Arbery case.

“We are actively investigating this situation and will provide pertinent updates as necessary,” the GBI posted Sunday morning.

Just before 8 p.m. Sunday GBI provided the update that Rashawn Smith, 20, had been arrested and charged with “Dissemination of Information Relating to Terroristic Acts for a Facebook post that contained a threat to future protests related to Ahmaud Arbery.”

Arbery was fatally shot on Feb. 23 in Brunswick but no charges were brought for more than two months. National outrage over the case swelled last week after video surfaced that appeared to show the shooting. Shortly after the video’s leak, Gregory McMichael, 64, and his son Travis McMichael, 34, were arrested and charged with murder and aggravated assault.

The father and son said they thought Arbery matched the appearance of a burglary suspect who they said had been recorded on a surveillance camera some time before.

RELATED | GBI reviewing additional video in case of Ahmaud Arbery

Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper Jones, has said she thinks her 25-year-old son, a former high school football player, was just jogging in the neighborhood before he was killed.

On Friday, several hundred people crowded outside the Glynn County Courthouse to mark what would have been Arbery’s 26th birthday, with many saying it’s too soon to celebrate because the case must still go before a grand jury that will decide whether to indict the McMichaels.

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