Ahmaud Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, opened up to talk show host Tamron Hall on May 19 about the ongoing investigation into her son’s killing and her thoughts on former President Barack Obama remarks during a graduation speech.
Gregory McMichael, 64, and his 34-year-old son Travis McMichael weren’t arrested until May 7, only after the video of the February 23rd shooting went viral. As the investigation continues, the McMichaels, who have been charged with felony murder, remain in police custody waiting for a bond hearing. Cobb County district attorney Joyette Holmes was selected May 11 to prosecute the case against the father and son.
Cooper-Jones said authorities originally blamed the delay in the investigation on the coronavirus pandemic.
“The murder happened before the social distancing came into effect. I think what took so long was my son’s death was going to be covered up. I don’t think that the virus had a big part in it at all,” she explained.
She also slammed the original district attorneys who declined to press charges, Jackie Johnson and George E. Barnhill, “I think they played a major part on the time that it took to get attention. I mean, they knew about the murder the day that it happened, and they failed to do anything about it.”
Tom Durden, Liberty County District Attorney, was the prosecutor on the case before it went to Holmes and had recommended that the case go to a grand jury.
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The grieving mother also revealed she was surprised when former President Barack Obama mentioned Ahmaud Arbery during his commencement address on May 16.
“It was shocking. But eventually I knew he would chime in because he was the president that cared,” Cooper-Jones told Hall. “And I knew he had seen the story and eventually he would speak on it. It really meant a lot.”
Watch Wanda Cooper-Jones interview with Tamron Hall below:
Photo: Erin Hooley/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images