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Defense attorneys weigh in on newly-released video in Ahmaud Arbery shooting investigation

This is video a former prosecutor on the case refers to in an email sent after his recusal.

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — We now have a second perspective showing what happened in the moments before Ahmaud Arbery's death.

Now, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr says he's also stepping in, looking into how the case was handled from the outset - and saying Arbery’s family and the community deserve answers.

Days after the arrest of Gregory and Travis McMichael, a video was released showing what appears to be Arbery in the neighborhood near where he was shot and killed on Feb. 23.

This is a video a former prosecutor on the case refers to in an email sent after his recusal.

On April 7, Ware County District Attorney George Barnhill wrote there was, “video of Arbery burglarizing a home immediately preceding the chase and confrontation.”

Now, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) is addressing the security camera video, saying, “We are indeed reviewing additional video footage and photographs as part of the active case. It is important to note that this footage was reviewed at the beginning of the GBI investigation and before the arrests of Gregory and Travis McMichael.”

In the video, a man dressed in white enters a home under construction and, minutes later, exiting and continuing down the street.

Keith Lamar is a criminal defense attorney and a former district attorney for Fulton County. He said watching this video is not likely to shift the course of the case – especially since police reports after the shooting did not note anything stolen on Arbery.

“First of all, it’s new construction and unoccupied. It’s not even a burglary,” Lamar said. “At most, you [would] get a criminal trespassing, maybe. But, no, you call the police and you let the police deal with it. You don’t have a chance to come out and gun somebody down.”

Defense Attorney Page Pate points out that the video could also highlight a claim made by the McMichaels.

“It at least supports, to some extent, their argument that somebody may have been committing a crime,” he said.

But both attorneys agree that video is far from conclusive evidence.

“To actually concoct a plan, to try and corner him in a box, that’s way over-the-top of what you can do to have a citizen’s arrest either,” Lamar said.

“I don’t think they had the right to chase him down, to confront him with firearms and ultimately, to use deadly force,” Pate said.


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