UPDATE: U.S. District Judge Lisa Godbey Wood has rejected a plea agreement Monday that would have averted a hate crimes trial for Travis McMichael.
The father and son convicted of murdering Ahmaud Arbery have reportedly come to an agreement on a plea deal that would eschew a trial for their federal hate crimes case in exchange for pleading guilty.
McMichaels reach plea deal in hate crimes case; Arbery’s parents opposed https://t.co/juVN7Ef2im
— Atlanta Journal-Constitution (@ajc) January 31, 2022
Greg McMichael and his son, Travis, were convicted of murder in a state trial and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
William “Roddie” Bryan, their neighbor who recorded video of Arbery being shot in the street, was given a life sentence with the possibility of parole.
From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Attorney Lee Merritt, who represents Arbery’s mother Wanda Cooper-Jones, said the deal would allow the McMichaels to spend the first 30 years of their sentences in “a preferred federal prison” instead of state prison.
He said both of Arbery’s parents oppose the deal and have made that clear to the Department of Justice.
In exchange for pleading guilty to the first count in the federal indictment — interfering with Arbery’s rights — the father and son would be sentenced to 30 years in federal custody, Sheffield said.
Federal prisons are apparently considered preferable accommodations versus state prisons.
Prosecutors reached plea deals for 2 white men convicted of murdering #AhmaudArbery, asking the judge to “dispose” of federal hate crime charges.
The McMichaels never faced state hate crime charges, as GA had no such law.
Lawyers for Arbery’s family call it a “backroom” deal. pic.twitter.com/NgmJ3g4Jfc
— AJ+ (@ajplus) January 31, 2022