Travis McMichael, the murder suspect in the death of Ahmaud Arbery, allegedly called Arbery the N-word after the shooting, according to a detective in the case. TMZ reports during Thursday's preliminary hearing, Agent Richard Dial of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation took the stand and stated how William "Roddie" Bryan Jr. told police he heard McMichael call Arbery a "f—ing n—" as he lay on the ground after being shot. There is currently no word on whether or not this could lead to hate crime charges.
Dial went on to say that he was aware of other examples of McMichael using racial slurs, as found in his cell phone and on social media. He allegedly made a violent comment towards the black community on an Instagram post: "blow that [N-word's] head off." It was not made clear who he was referring to. Dial also stated that somewhere online McMichael stated that "he loved his job 'cause he was on a boat and there weren't any n-words anywhere." Additionally, Dial commented on the security cam footage of Arbery visiting an under-construction home ahead of his death. He stated that he found no evidence that Arbery took anything from the site.
Man who shot Ahmaud Arbery was heard saying racial slur over his body, investigator testifies https://t.co/lziA2LndAN— CBS News (@CBSNews) June 4, 2020
Arbery was shot and killed in February after McMichael and his father Greg suspected Arbery of matching the description of a burglary suspect in the area. The men confessed to chasing down Arbery in their truck with guns, which resulted in a fatal confrontation. In a video shot by William "Roddie" Bryan — a neighbor of the McMichael's who has also been charged in Arbery's death — the father and son could be seen pulling up to Arbery as he jogged, with the younger pulling his gun. Arbery appeared to try and wrestle the gun away from McMichael, but he was shot three times.
In their initial statements to police in February, the McMichael's claimed that Arbery was the instigator in the situation, but the video footage showed that it was Travis who first pulled his weapon on Arbery. Months later, on May 7, the McMichaels were charged with felony murder and aggravated assault. The charges came two days after the footage that Bryan recorded was released and went viral. Bryan was also arrested and charged with felony murder, as well as with "illegally using a vehicle to try to confine and detain" Arbery. Notably, Bryan's lawyer has stated that he was not involved with Arbery's death, arguing that he was simply witnessing it, per CBS News. The FBI and the State of Georgia have stated that they are investigating the initial investigation of Arbery's shooting due to some inconsistencies.