Three months ago, a 25-year old man named Ahmaud Arbery was pursued, shot, and killed by a father and his son. Arbery’s family claimed he was out jogging, however the McMichaels thought otherwise. Gregory McMichael told police that he assumed Arbery was a burglar who had recently been targeting the neighborhood.
Burglary: An unlawful entry into a building or other location for the purposes of committing an offence.
Seeing a young man jog around in khaki pants must have been very unfamiliar in this Georgia neighborhood, and caused uneasiness to its residents. Eventually, neighbor William Bryan called the police to report a crime.
Trespassing: To enter the owner’s land or property without permission.
Felony: A crime, typically one involving violence, regarded as more serious than a misdemeanor, and usually punishable by imprisonment for more than one year or by death.
After witnessing Arbery flee from the construction site, Gregory McMichael armed himself with a .357 Magnum and his son, a shotgun. Across the street, William Bryan tried to block Arbery during the pursuit.
Civilian: A person not in the armed services or the police force.
Police: The civil force of a national or local government, responsible for the prevention and detection of crime and the maintenance of public order.
The civilian father, Gregory McMichael, remained on standby and watched as his civilian son, Travis McMichael, aggressively tried to detain Ahmaud in the street. 34-year-old Travis told police that when they caught up with Arbery, he attacked, which lead him to fire his weapon in self-defense.
Self-defense: The defense of one’s person or interests which is permitted in certain cases as an answer to a charge of violent crime.
Public records reported that there had been just one confirmed burglary in the neighborhood: the theft of a handgun from an unlocked truck parked outside the McMichael’s house.
Homicide: The deliberate and unlawful killing of one person by another; murder.
It appears our nation has forgotten the dictionary definition of certain words when it comes to justifying the case of Ahmed Arbury. Using facts and removing any form of racial influence, this case is clearly one that should not be questioned. Many have attempted to truly understand why so many people of color are racially abused. Not particularly, “Why is there mistreatment…”, but instead, “Why hasn’t it ended?” Unfortunately, Ahmaud Arbery has now joined the long list of innocent people who were victims of this unanswered question.
People march on Hollywood Boulevard in protest of the decision in New York not to indict a police officer involved in the chokehold death of Eric Garner on December 6, 2014, in Los Angeles. Photo Credit: David McNew/Getty