Father and son sentenced to life for hate crime in death of Ahmaud Arbery

Sentencing hearings will be held for the McMichael's neighbor, William "Roddie" Bryan, later in the day for the federal case.

Updated: August 8, 2022 - 2:40pm

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Travis McMichael, the Georgia man who fatally shot Ahmaud Arbery, and his father, Greg McMichael, on Monday both received life prison sentences for committing federal hate crimes.

A sentencing hearing will be held for the McMichaels' neighbor, William "Roddie" Bryan, later in the day for the case.

U.S. District Court Judge Lisa Godbey Wood sentenced the McMichaels in the city of Brunswick, Ga., to the largely symbolic sentence of life in prison. The McMichaels were already sentenced in January to life without parole for Arbery's murder in a Georgia state court.

"And it's not lost on the court that it was the kind of trial that Ahmaud Arbery did not receive before he was shot and killed," Wood said at Travis McMichael's sentencing, The Associated Press reported.

Wood previously rejected a plea deal that would have allowed him to avoid a hate crime trial and spend the first 30 years of his sentence in federal prison.

Greg McMichael told Arbery's family before he was sentenced on Monday: "I’m sure my words mean very little to you but I want to assure you I never wanted any of this to happen. There was no malice in my heart or my son’s heart that day."

The McMichaels armed themselves and pursued Arbery in their pickup truck in February 2020. Bryan joined in the chase and recorded the video of Travis McMichael shooting Arbery. 

The McMichaels told law enforcement they thought Arbery was a burglar, but officials found he was innocent and unarmed.

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