Travis McMichael, his father, Gregory McMichael, and William “Roddie” Bryan were each hit with one count of interference with rights—which is a hate crime—and a charge of attempted kidnapping. Travis and Gregory McMichael were also charged with one count each of using, carrying, and brandishing/discharging a firearm during a violent crime.
The hate crime charges were levied after federal prosecutors determined that the suspects allegedly used threats and force to stop Arbery from accessing a public street because of his race. The prosecution also believes that these hate crimes led to his death.
The three men were taken into custody last May after chasing and shooting Arbery while he was jogging through a Satilla Shores, Georgia neighborhood. McMichael claimed that he and his son suspected Arbery of burglary, prompting them to attack him. Arbery was unarmed at the time of his death.
These new federal charges are in addition to separate state proceedings in which each defendant will face charges that include malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, and criminal attempt to commit a felony charges.