President Donald Trump spoke out on Friday about the cell-phone video that showed the fatal shooting of 25-year-old Georgia resident Ahmaud Arbery. CNN reported that the president called the video “very, very disturbing.” Trump also expressed his condolences to Arbery’s family.
“I will say that looks like a really good young guy. It’s a very disturbing situation to me and my heart goes out to the parents and the family and the friends…”
Trump continued by saying that he was confident Gov. Brian Kemp would handle the situation appropriately, according to CNN. He stressed that the crime was in the hands of local law enforcement and public officials. When asked what he, as president, could do to ensure that justice was served in this case, Trump again stated that he trusted local authorities to investigate the situation thoroughly and decide on the proper course of action.
Trump went on to say that he believes it is essential to piece together all the events surrounding the shooting, per CNN.
“It could be something that we didn’t see on tape. There could be a lot of, if you saw things went off tape, and then back on tape… to anybody that watched it, certainly, it was a disturbing or troubling video no question about that. But they have very good law enforcement in the state of Georgia and I’m sure they are going to come up with exactly what happened.”
According to Politico, these comments by Trump seem to suggest he believes there may be information about the shooing that has yet to be discovered which could change the outcome of the investigation.
Let’s voice outrage beyond posting his picture on social media. Among other things, District Attorney George Barnhill must RESIGN.
Text JUSTICE to 55156.
Dial 912-554-7200 to make your voice heard.
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) May 7, 2020
On Thursday evening, a father and a son — Gregory and Travis McMichael — were both arrested for the fatal shooting of Arbery, which is shown in the video Trump called “disturbing.” They have been charged with murder and aggravated assault. The man who recorded the video of the shooting on his cell-phone — William “Roddie” Bryan — is also under investigation in connection with the shooting.
Remember, #AhmaudAubery was murdered on Feb. 23. The ONLY reason this is happening now is because a video came out & we demanded justice. Within 3 days the killers have been arrested. This is far from over. Get used to using your voice. #IRunwithAhmaud #JusticeForAhmaud https://t.co/ONoPyl8OEN
— W. Kamau Bell (@wkamaubell) May 8, 2020
The McMichaels were not charged at the time of the shooting because they claimed they were acting in self-defense. However, the cell-phone video that was released earlier this week appears to show a very different version of events.
A report from The Star on Thursday revealed that Gregory McMichael actually had some history with Arbery before the shooting. McMichael is a retired police officer, and according to The Star, he investigated Arbery for a weapons charge several years ago. McMichael did not disclose the connection to the law enforcement officers investigating the shooting, though it’s unclear whether he forgot or purposely hid the information.
According to Politico, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation is handling the ongoing investigation.