Ahmaud Arbery Case: Racist Text Messages From Man Who Filmed Fatal Shooting Revealed

Ahmaud Arbery Case: Racist Text Messages From Man Who Filmed Fatal Shooting Revealed

William Bryan’s lawyer said his client using the N-word doesn’t make him racist.

Published 2 weeks ago

Written by BET Staff

William "Roddie" Bryan is one of the three men charged in the killing of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery. Bryan, who filmed the shooting and is also being investigated for sex crimes, is maintaing he did nothing wrong. But now his racist text messages have surfaced.

On October 10, an episode of 48 Hours aired that focused on Arbery and revealed prosecutors notified the court two weeks ago that “they intend to introduce trial evidence of past racial slurs investigators found on Roddie Bryan's phone,” according to CBS.

A text sent from Roddie Bryan's number on January 20, Martin Luther King Day, read, "I bet ya'll are truly having a Monkey Parade over there." 

There are also “multiple pages” of him using the N-word, CBS News correspondent Omar Villafranca stated. Bryan’s lawyer, Kevin Gough, said using the N-word doesn’t make him racist. Gough also stated, "It's not a word I would use but I'm not Roddie Bryan."

As for the upcoming trial, Gough appeared confident, "The jury's gonna look at the facts of this case and they're gonna conclude that whether Ahmaud Arbery was white, Black or Martian, that Roddie Bryan wouldn't have acted any differently on the day in question." 

RELATED: Man Who Filmed Ahmaud Arbery’s Death Reportedly Being Investigated For Sex Crimes

Racist text messages from Gregory and Travis McMichael, the father and son who followed Arbery while jogging in Brunswick, Ga., have also surfaced. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, a court filing claims that Travis posted a “racial highway video Facebook post,” “a Racial Johnny Rebel Facebook post” and sent a racist text message in 2019.  Gregory reportedly posted a “Identity Dixie Facebook post” and “Racial Johnny Rebel Facebook post.” 

Arbery, who was only 26, was shot and killed on February 23 by the McMichaels. William Bryan recorded the incident. 

The McMichaels were arrested and charged with murder and aggravated assault on May 7, 73 days after Arbery was killed. William Bryan was charged with felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment charges. He also faces possible hate crime charges.

BET has been covering every angle of the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and other social justice cases and the subsequent aftermath and protests. For our continuing coverage, click here.

Glynn County Sheriff’s Office/Handout via REUTERS


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NOVEMBER 3, 2020