Georgia AG asks feds to investigate Ahmaud Arbery shooting

State top lawyer, Chris Carr, taps the U.S. Department of Justice to review how Arbery's murder is being handled locally

Ahmaud Arbery (Credit: Ahmaud Arbery)

The shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery and the delay of the arrest of his killers has sparked outrage across the country. On Sunday night, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr released a statement calling for the federal government to investigate the local office’s handling of the murder.

“The request to the U.S. Department of Justice includes, but is not limited to, investigation of the communications and discussions by and between the Office of the District Attorney of the Brunswick Judicial Circuit and the Office of the District Attorney of the Waycross Judicial Circuit related to this case,” the AG’s office said in a statement released Sunday night.

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Arbery was shot and killed by Gregory McMichael and his son Travis McMichael while out jogging through a mostly-white neighborhood on Feb 23. It was another 74 days after the slaying, that the father-son duo were finally arrested and charged with murder. Due, in part, to the release of a video of the incident.

The mismanagement of the case led to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to conduct their own probe and ultimately led to the arrest.

Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery at the Glynn County Courthouse on May 8, 2020 in Brunswick, Georgia. Gregory McMichael and Travis McMichael were arrested the previous night and charged with murder. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

According to a report by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Carr is requesting the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia to lead a “complete and transparent review of how the Ahmaud Arbery case was handled from the outset.”

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Two prosecutors recused themselves due to their relationship with the elder McMichael who was once an investigator in the Office of the District Attorney of the Waycross Judicial Circuit. The actions of two South Georgia district attorneys, Jackie Johnson, of the Brunswick Judicial Circuit, and George Barnhill, of Waycross, are in question.

Attorneys Lee MerrittBenjamin Crump, and Chris Stewart all welcomed the announcement of the federal probe with a joint statement. “We have requested the involvement of the DOJ since we first took this case,” it reads, “There are far too many questions about how this case was handled and why it took 74 days for two of the killers to be arrested and charged in Mr. Arbery’s death.”