State Watch

Georgia officer testifies he was going to give Arbery a trespass warning

A Georgia police officer testified on Friday that he was going to give Ahmaud Arbery a warning for trespassing in the unfinished property he was seen running from before he was fatally shot last year while jogging.

Glynn County Police Officer Robert Rash said he was looking for Arbery after the owner of the unfinished home shared security camera footage of him entering the home five times between October 2019 and Feb. 23, 2020, when he was shot, The Associated Press reported.

Rash said that when people trespass, which in Georgia is a misdemeanor, he tells them that the homeowner does not want them there.

“Once we make contact with the person on the property, we explain to them the homeowner does not want them there, they have no legal reason to be there,” Rash said, according to the AP. “I explain to that person, if you ever come back onto this property for any reason, you will be arrested.” 

However, Arbery was killed before Rash was able to find him.

Three men, Gregory McMichael, Travis McMichael and William “Roddie” Bryant, are currently standing trial for felony murder charges for killing Arbery.

Footage released in May 2020, months after the shooting, showed Arbery running away from two vehicles and struggling with a man who had a shotgun. The McMichaels have said they thought Arbery had been breaking into homes in the neighborhood.

During the trial on Friday, the jury saw videos of Arbery’s previous visits to the property and heard a deposition that the homeowner, Larry English, gave in September, Reuters reported.

In the deposition, English said he asked one neighbor to watch his property, which was not any of the three men. He later heard that Travis McMichael was with that neighbor when Arbery went to the home two weeks before he was killed.

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