Savannah, Georgia (AP) – A former Georgia prosecutor was charged with crime Thursday for using their position to prevent charges against a man who tracked and killed Amad Arbury shortly after the shooting. I did.

Arbury’s family attorney will speak on the charges at an EST press conference on Friday at 10:30 a.m.

A Glynn County shoreline grand jury has indicted former Brunswick attorney Jackie Johnson with a crime of violating her oath of office and disturbing an underage law enforcement officer.

The charges came as a result of Georgia’s Attorney General Chris Carr, who was investigating local prosecutors’ treatment of Arbury’s murder last year after a video of cell phone shooting and a delay in prosecution sparked prosecutors. ..

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“The indictment was returned today, but the file has not been closed and we will continue the investigation,” Republican Kerr said in a statement.

Arbury picks up a 25-year-old black man on a pickup truck on February 23, 2020 after finding a white father and son Greg and Travis McMichael armed and running in a neighborhood outside the coastal town of Brunswick. Killed after the persecution. About 112 kilometers south of the savannah.

Neighbor William “Rodi” Brian joined the chase and filmed a cell phone video of Travis McMichael shooting Arberry at close range with a shotgun. McMichales said he believed Arbery was a thief and was shot after attacking Travis McMichael.

Police did not pursue any of them shortly after the shooting, and McMichaels and Brian were 2 years old until a video of the shooting leaked online and Governor Brian Kemp asked the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to take over the case. It stayed free for over a month. ..

McMichaels and Bryan were charged with murder and other crimes in May 2020 and tried this fall. Prosecutors say Arbury is only jogging the neighborhood and is not armed when Travis McMichael shoots him. They say there is no evidence that Arbury committed a crime.

Greg McMichael worked as an investigator in Johnson’s office but retired in 2019. Evidence presented at the murder trial shows that he called Johnson’s cell phone and left her a voice message shortly after the shooting.

“Jackie, this is Greg,” he said, according to a phone record that was on the court record. “Can you call me asap? My son and I are involved in the filming and we need immediate advice. “

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Records of Greg McMichael’s cell phone call that day do not indicate that Johnson called him back.

According to the indictment, Johnson showed “favors and affection” to Greg McMichael during the investigation and interfered with local police by saying, “Do not arrest Travis McMichael.”

Johnson didn’t immediately return a phone message asking for comment on Thursday afternoon. She previously claimed she didn’t do anything wrong and said she quickly pulled back from the incident because Greg McMichael was a former employee.

Johnson told The Associated Press in November after losing his re-election.

Arbury’s mother’s attorney Lee Merritt said in a statement Thursday that prosecutors “must be held liable if they disrupt the investigation to protect friends and law enforcement”.

Arbury’s mother, Wanda Cooper Jones, posted her reaction on Facebook: “Former Attorney General Jackie Johnson…. Accused !!! JusticeForMyBaby !!!! ”

In his call to investigate the prosecution’s illegal activities, Kerr called on GBI to investigate not only Johnson’s actions in relation to the murder, but the actions of the Waycross Judiciary Patrol District Attorney George Burnhill. No charges have been reported against Burnhill.

After the shooting, Johnson called Burnhill to answer questions from the police about how the shootings were handled.

Kerr was named to take over Burnhill on February 27, four days after filming. Mr Kerr said in a letter ordering an investigation last May that Mr Burnhill had not already told police that “there is no reason to arrest the person involved in Mr Arbury’s death”.

Burnhill later resigned after the Arbury family learned that his son was serving as assistant prosecutor for Johnson. But before leaving, Burnhill wrote to the captain of the Glynn County Police Department and McMichael was “in an arduous chase” tracking the alleged robbery in their neighborhood for a firm and direct possible cause. Was, and asked / said to him. “

“It appears that their intention was to arrest and detain the criminal suspect until law enforcement officers arrive. It is perfectly legal under Georgian law, ”Barnhill said during the Georgia Civil War. He advised in a letter referring to the Citizen Arrest Act.

The law was abolished in May 2021 in response to Arbury’s death, with overwhelming support from Republicans and Democrats.

Johnson told AP in May 2020 that Glynn County police contacted their two prosecutors on the day of the shooting. She said it was the police officer who “put it as a self-defense robbery case”.

“Our office was unable to advise or assist them because of our apparent conflict,” said Johnson.

Johnson, ten years later as chief prosecutor for five counties in southeast Georgia, blamed the controversy surrounding Arbury’s death for his loss in last year’s elections. It lost to independent candidate Keith Higgins, who had to collect thousands of signatures to get on the ballot.

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Ahmaud Arbery Prosecutor: Former Georgia prosecutor Jackie Johnson charged with misconduct after shooting black man