Ahmaud Arbery Shooting: William 'Roddie' Bryan Jr., Man Who Filmed Jogger's Death, Arrested on Murder Charge
William "Roddie" Bryan, 50, was arrested on charges of felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced Thursday.
The Georgia man who filmed on his cellphone the fatal shooting of Ahmaud Arbery has been arrested and charged with murder, officials said. William "Roddie" Bryan, 50, was arrested on charges of felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced Thursday.
Arbery, 25, was shot and killed Feb. 23 after a white father and son, Gregory and Travis McMichael, allegedly armed themselves and pursued him after spotting him jogging in the Satilla Shores neighborhood.
Bryan lives in the same subdivision and the video he took from his vehicle of Arbery's death went viral May 5 and prompted a national outrage at what some, including former Vice President Joe Biden and Arbery's family called "a lynching."
It was after the video was leaked by an attorney that the McMichaels were arrested. They are being held without bail after being charged earlier this month with first-degree murder and aggravated assault.
Gregory McMichael, 64, told police he believed Arbery was responsible for a series of alleged break-ins in the area, and he and his son, Travis, 34, armed themselves and pursued Arbery in a pick-up truck.
After shouting at the man to stop, the elder McMichael told investigators, Arbery attacked Travis and the two struggled over the shotgun. Travis shot the man, his father said.
Arbery, according to an autopsy report, suffered three shotgun wounds. He died in the street, Glynn County Police said.
Attorneys for the elder McMichael said in a statement last week that their client "did not commit murder," saying he's been charged as party to the crime. The attorneys, Frank and Laura Hogue, said they are aware of "several other critically important facts" that portray "a very different narrative" for the killing.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s entire delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives — composed of seven Republicans and four Democrats — sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General William Barr Wednesday seeking federal support in the investigation.
"This devastating case and alarming video brought a national spotlight to our beloved home state. For these reasons no stone should be left unturned in ensuring a fair, thorough, and lawful process. Justice cannot exist in a democracy that does not fiercely enforce equality under the law," the letter said.
Bryan will be booked into the Glynn County Jail, the GBI said. This case is being investigated in partnership with District Attorney Joyette Holmes of the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office.
Arbery's family released a statement through their attorneys following news of Bryan's arrest.
"The family of Ahmaud Arbery was relieved to learn that the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has today taken William 'Roddie' Bryan into custody," the statement said, the Associated Press reported. "We called for his arrest from the very beginning of this process. His involvement in the murder of Mr. Arbery was obvious to us, to many around the country and after their thorough investigation, it was clear to the GBI as well."
"The family of Mr. Arbery is thankful for the diligence of the GBI and they way in which they tirelessly pursued the evidence in this case. We want anyone who participated in the murder of Mr. Arbery to be held accountable."
In an interview last week with CBS affiliate WJAX, Bryan said he had "nothing to do" with Arbery's death. "I had nothing to do with it. I'm trying to get my life back to normal, and it's been smeared for the last week," Bryan said. "I was told I was a witness and I'm not sure what I am, other than receiving a bunch of threats."
Bryan's attorney, Kevin Gough, did not respond to InsideEdition.com's request for comment. In a statement made to First Coast News before his client's arrest, Gough called Bryan "a witness to the tragic shooting and death of Ahmaud Arbery."
"No parent should have to bury their own child, especially one so young. As a father himself, Roddie’s heart goes out to Ahmaud’s family," he said. "Thanks to the public outcry over Mr. Arbery’s death, and the manner in which prosecutor’s handled it, the family will have their day in court. It will be for a judge and jury to determine the fate of those responsible for his death."
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