The officer who initially responded to the February 2020 conflict between Ahmaud Arbery and the the men who confronted him, which ended in his death, testified there was little he could do for him when he arrived at the scene.
During court proceedings on Monday (Nov. 7) jurors were shown graphic photos of the aftermath of the shooting, including Arbery’s fatal wounds and the bloodstained area around his body, which reportedly made several visibly uncomfortable.
Arbery, 25, was shot dead in a confrontation between himself, and father and son Greg and Travis McMichael who suspected him of burglary and claimed to be making a citizens’ arrest. Prosecutors say they killed a man who was simply out jogging in the Brunswick, Ga., neighborhood.
Former Glynn County Police Officer Ricky Minshew testified he was in the area responding to a report of a "suspicious black male" on February 23, 2020, when he heard "two loud pop sounds."
Minshew said he arrived at the scene of the shooting and observed two white men pacing and Arbery shot on the ground, according to CBS News, and heard what is commonly called a “death rattle,” which is air passing from the lungs of a person as they die.
He said he instructed 911 operators to send emergency medical responders, but admitted he never rendered aid to Arbery. But he also explained why.
"Without having any other police units to have my back, there was no way I could switch to do anything medical and still watch after my own safety,” Minshew testified.
Minshew also said on the witness stand that William "Roddie" Bryan Jr., the man who recorded video of Arbery being chased, never told him a citizen's arrest of Arbery was being made.
Video of the killing didn’t surface until more than two months after it happened. There were demonstrations and protests over the Arbery killing that took place just weeks before the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
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Bryan and the McMichaels are charged with malice and felony murder in connection with Arbery's shooting. The elder McMichael is a former cop who retired after being suspended in 2019 for repeatedly failing to take retraining courses according to ABC News. The trio also face charges of aggravated assault, false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment. Each has pleaded not guilty.