Bombshell released in court after 3 accused in killing of Ahmaud Arbery plead not guilty

Gregory McMichael, Travis McMichael, William 'Roddie' Bryan appear before judge via webcam

BRUNSWICK, Ga. – The three Glynn County men accused in the murder of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery appeared via video conference Friday at an arraignment hearing, pleading not guilty to all charges. During a hearing on a motion to grant bond following the arraignments, it came out that one of the defendants is under federal investigation for sex crimes.

Travis McMichael and his father, Gregory, are accused in the shooting of Arbery in late February as he jogged through their Satilla Shores neighborhood. William “Roddie” Bryan recorded on his cell phone the final moments of Arbury running for his life and being gunned down. All three were formally charged Friday morning in connection with the case Friday morning and each entered not guilty pleas.

The three men were arrested more than 70 days after the shooting of Arbery after Bryan’s cellphone video of the incident went viral. What was seen in the video conflicted with what the three men told Glynn County police after the shooting.

After the arraignment hearing, the Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley heard motions filed by Bryan’s attorney, Kevin Gough, including asking that his client be released on bond pending trial.

“Keeping him in jail isn’t accomplishing anything,” Gough said prior to entering court Friday. “Roddie is struggling in there. He’s not used to being in jail. He lost his house, his car, his job and everything, everything he has left in the world is in storage. If he can get back out, he can reclaim his life.”

During witness testimony in on the bond motion, the prosecutor revealed that Bryan is under investigation for sex crimes.

“There are texts to support the DOJ’s investigation,” Assistant District Attorney Jesse Evans said. “I can confirm as of yesterday, the GBI has opened an additional parallel investigation into sex crimes that stemmed from this. This now also heightens the risk of flight, as well.”

Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, asked the judge to keep Bryan in jail pending their trial.

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