Although prosecutors did not argue that racism motivated the murder, federal authorities charged them with hate crimes, alleging they hunted down and killed Mr. Arbery because he was black. This case is expected to be tried in February.
Lawyers for the McMichaels argued the murder was justified after Mr Arbery walked past the McMichaels Alley in a neighborhood that had seen a spate of property thefts. The two McMichaels grabbed their guns and jumped into their van in pursuit, with Bryan, unarmed, joining them moments later.
Prosecutors said the defendants “assumed the worst” about a black man jogging on Sunday afternoon. He was chased by the accused for about five minutes in the streets in a loop.