Attorneys representing the three men accused of killing Ahmaud Arbery filed motions for a mistrial Monday morning (November 15) after Rev. Jesse Jackson showing up to Georgia Court in the Glynn County courthouse hearing the trial of Ahmaud Arbery killers.
The civil rights icon’s attendance comes after William “Roddie” Bryan‘s lawyer, Kevin Gough, made controversial remarks about “Black pastors” showing up for the Arbery family during the trial as he referenced Jesse Jackson showing up to Georgia Court.
Another one of the accused men’s lawyers, Jason Sheffield, said Friday (November 12) that Gough’s comments were “totally asinine. Ridiculous,” but still filed a motion for a mistrial Monday (November 15) after complaining about the reaction to a photo of Arbery being shown in court.
According to CNN, Sheffield argued that the photo of Arbery caused emotion in the courtroom and that emotion was exaggerated by Jackson’s presence.
Judge Timothy Walmsley said that emotions in a courtroom are not “unexpected or unreasonable” and ultimately denied all of the motions for a mistrial submitted this week.
The trial of the three men –– Gregory and Travis McMichael along with Bryan –– accused of gunning down Arbery in the middle of a street has received national attention since the deadly February 23, 2020 shooting.
Their attorneys’ remarks are furthering the attention in the case as jury selection crept along for weeks, which ended in only one Black man out of 12 jurors being seated to hear and decide the case.
Reading about Black trauma can have an impact on your mental health. If you or someone you know need immediate mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor. These additional resources are also available:
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
The National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-6264
The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America 1-240-485-1001
For more mental health resources, click HERE.