Judge in Ahmaud Arbery shooting case explains reasoning for denying bond to suspects

GLYNN COUNTY, Ga. — The judge who denied bond for the suspects involved in the murder of Ahmaud Arbery made his reasons clear for doing so.

Arbery was shot and killed while jogging in Brunswick. The judge presiding over the case denied bond last month following two days of testimony and said he would have more details later.

Judge Timothy Walmsley released the six-page denial ruling for the first time since verbally denying bond, explaining why he thinks the defendants are not good candidates for bond. In the ruling, Walmsley noted, “There appears there was little or no attempt by the defendants to have a conversation with Arbery, nor was there an attempt to call the police.”

Walmsley also referenced police body camera video taken as officers first arrived at the shooting scene.

Greg and Travis McMichael had just chased Arbery through their Glynn County neighborhood, cornered him and then shot him. The McMichaels claim self-defense, insisting they were making a citizen’s arrest of a suspected burglar.

Walmsley noted that when police arrived, Greg McMichael tried to influence the case by mentioning he was a retired cop and then calling the district attorney who is his former boss.

Walmsley wrote in his ruling, “The call itself is remarkable, particularly in light of the Glynn County District Attorney’s ultimate recusal and the course this case took to indictment.”

District Attorney Jackie Johnson is under investigation herself for the handling of the case and lost her bid for reelection.

The defense plans to appeal the ruling, and lawyers for the McMichaels immediately asked the judge for permission to appeal to the state Supreme Court.

It is unclear if Walmsley will grant the request to appeal.