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William Bryan Jr., the man who took video of the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery, arrested on felony murder charge

May 22, 2020
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The man who filmed the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery has been arrested on felony murder charges, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

William “Roddie” Bryan Jr., 50, was arrested Thursday and will be booked into the Glynn County Jail, the bureau announced. GBI Director Vic Reynolds said earlier in the month the department was investigating Bryan, while Kevin Gough, the man’s attorney, had previously called on the GBI to clear his client’s name. 

Bryan was also charged with criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment, the GBI announced in a statement. USA TODAY has reached out to Gough for comment.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Judge appointed: Timothy Walmsley appointed to preside over Ahmaud Arbery case, the first step in long judicial process” data-reactid=”14″>Judge appointed: Timothy Walmsley appointed to preside over Ahmaud Arbery case, the first step in long judicial process

In a statement, attorneys for Arbery’s parents said they called for Bryan’s arrest “from the very beginning of this process.” They added Arbery’s family was “relieved” to hear of Bryan’s arrest.

“His involvement in the murder of Mr. Arbery was obvious to us, to many around the country and after their thorough investigation, it was clear to the GBI as well,” attorneys S. Lee Merritt, Benjamin Crump and L. Chris Stewart said in a statement.

Bryan’s arrest is the latest in connection to the February shooting of Arbery, a 25-year-old black man.

Gregory and Travis McMichael were arrested following a storm of public outcry after Bryan’s video of Arbery’s death was made public. The white father and son were both charged with murder and aggravated assault and a search warrant was executed at their home on Tuesday, according to the GBI. 

Arbery was shot and killed about two miles from his home in a neighborhood outside Brunswick, Georgia.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="‘A good kid’: Ahmaud Arbery remembered as ‘humble guy’ with plans to become an electrician” data-reactid=”20″>‘A good kid’: Ahmaud Arbery remembered as ‘humble guy’ with plans to become an electrician

A memo obtained by USA TODAY written by the district attorney who previously led the investigation into Arbery’s death said Bryan, also a white man, had joined the two suspects in “hot pursuit” of Arbery.

Alan Tucker, a criminal defense lawyer in Brunswick who was not retained to represent anyone in the case, said he released the video to promote “absolute transparency.” Gough told USA TODAY that Bryan and his family have been harassed in recent weeks.

“Roddie is a family man, NASCAR fan, and enjoys rock and roll. He is not now, and never has been, a ‘vigilante’,” Gough said in a statement earlier this month. He added Bryan was a witness to a crime.

A news conference is scheduled for Friday at GBI Headquarters, the bureau said in a press release.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Contributing:&nbsp;Grace Hauck, USA TODAY.” data-reactid=”25″>Contributing: Grace Hauck, USA TODAY.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Ahmaud Arbery: William Bryan Jr., the man who taped shooting, arrested” data-reactid=”26″>This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Ahmaud Arbery: William Bryan Jr., the man who taped shooting, arrested

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