Travis McMichael's pro-vigilantism Facebook posts come back to haunt him in Arbery murder trial cross-examination
This Thursday, prosecutor Linda Dunikoski cross examined the man who shot and killed 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery, and showed examples of past social media posts of his where he seemed to endorse vigilantism.
Three white men are on trial for killing Arbery, a Black jogger, on February 23, 2020 after chasing him through their neighborhood in pickup trucks.
Gregory McMichael, his son Travis and their neighbor William Bryan say they were attempting to make a "citizen's arrest" of a man they suspected of being a burglar. Arbery's family and supporters have called it a modern day lynching.
While questioning Travis McMichael, Dunikoski showed him a Facebook post he made where he said criminals who wanted to commit crimes in his neighborhood were "playing with fire." In another post, McMichael replied to a post about crime by writing, "Arm up."
Dunikoski then reminded McMichael about a Facebook conversation he had where an acquaintance posited that people should "make examples" people who "steal stuff," to which McMichael replied, "That's right. Hope ya'll catch the vermin." In the same Facebook conversation, McMichael suggested that his father and co-defendant Greg McMichael, 65, was willing to commit vigilante violence and didn't care about going to jail, and that he was "beginning to feel the same."
Travis McMichael eventually acknowledged that he was the author of all the posts Dunikoski cited.
It took nearly three months for the McMichaels and Bryan to be arrested and they were charged only after a video of the shooting of Arbery was leaked online and sparked outrage.
Watch the exchange below:
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