A couple of weeks ago, all three of the killers involved in the 2020 death of Ahmaud Abrery were convicted of federal hate crimes. Now two of the killers, Travis McMichael and his father Greg McMichael are looking for an acquittal of their federal hate crimes convictions, according to CNN.
The father and son, who both filed separate motions for judgments of acquittal on all the federal charges, are arguing that the killing of the 25-year-old Black man did not happen on public streets and that the government did not give enough evidence for them to be convicted.
According to CNN, court records show that William R. Bryan, the third man convicted in the killing of Arbery, has not filed a motion since the federal hate crimes trial ended.
The three men had 14 days after the verdicts were issued on February 22 to file post-trial motions.
In the 43-page appeal for an acquittal, attorneys for Travis McMichael used the first 33-pages to argue the government did not sufficiently prove that Arbery was running on a public street. Federal civil rights laws prohibits the willful harm or intimidation of people in public spaces based on their race.
The McMichaels, who were armed, were in one vehicle, while Bryan, who joined while the chase was underway, followed in his own truck, assisting in and recording the chase. Arbery was unarmed.
Defense attorneys argued the McMichaels pursued Arbery in a pickup truck to stop him for police because they suspected him of committing a crime, and that Travis McMichael shot Arbery in self-defense as they wrestled over McMichael’s shotgun.
The motion stated that the testimony only showed the neighborhood’s “developer offered to dedicate the Satilla Shores neighborhood streets to the county, but the county did not expressly or implicitly accept that offer,” according to the court documents.
Prosecutors have not yet filed a response with the court, according to CNN.
Greg McMichael’s motion claimed that there was not any evidence that he went after Arbery because of the color of his skin, in reference to the interference of rights convictions. The motion also said that there was no evidence that Greg used the n-word or any other racial slurs.
More from CNN:
The government “failed to supply the jury with any evidence that Defendant Gregory McMichael associated African Americans with criminality,” even though “it is true that the Government admitted evidence and testimony demonstrating that defendants Travis McMichael and William Bryan may have associated African Americans with the commission of crime,” according to the motion.
According to CNN, a sentencing date on the federal charges has not been scheduled.