Crowd outside US court yells "justice" and "yes" as verdicts in Ahmaud Arbery murder trial were read, some waving flags including one for Black Lives Matter movement. Here are some initial reactions to judgment.
Cheers and tears have been shared among a large crowd gathered outside a Georgia courthouse as the verdicts in the Ahmaud Arbery death trial were read live, bringing an end to another test case of how the US justice system handles the killing of unarmed Black people by white people.
A Georgia jury convicted on Wednesday three white men of murdering for chasing a Black man named Ahmaud Arbery as he ran through their mostly white neighbourhood in February 2020.
The jury found Travis McMichael, 35; his father Gregory McMichael, 65, and a neighbour, William "Roddie" Bryan, 52, guilty of murder and other charges.
Here are some initial reactions to Wednesday's verdict.
US President Joe Biden
"Nothing can bring Mr. Arbery back to his family and to his community, but the verdict ensures that those who committed this horrible crime will be punished," US President Joe Biden said.
"While the guilty verdicts reflect our justice system doing its job, that alone is not enough. Instead, we must recommit ourselves to building a future of unity and shared strength where no one fears violence because of the color of their skin."
American civil rights leader Al Sharpton
"Let the word go forth all over the world that a jury of 11 whites and one black in the Deep South stood up in the courtroom and said that Black lives do matter," American civil rights leader Al Sharpton said outside the Brunswick, Georgia courthouse.
“I don't want to see no daddy watch their kid get lynched and shot down like that.”— TRT World (@trtworld) November 25, 2021
Ahmaud Arbery's parents react to guilty verdict pic.twitter.com/i7fFBAhLe4
Governor of Georgia Brian Kemp
"As legal efforts continue to hold accountable all who may be responsible, we hope the Arbery family, the Brunswick community, our state, and those around the nation who have been following his case can now move forward down a path of healing and reconciliation," said Governor of Georgia Brian Kemp.
Benjamin Crump, attorney for Ahmaud Arbery's father
"After nearly two years of pain, suffering, and wondering if Ahmaud's killers would be held to account, the Arbery family finally has some justice," Crump said in a statement.
"The spirit of Ahmaud defeated the lynch mob."
Wanda Cooper-Jones, Ahmaud Arbery's mother
"It's been a long fight. It’s been a hard fight. But God is good," Wanda Cooper-Jones, Arbery's mother said.
Of her son, she said, "He will now rest in peace."
US Senator Raphael Warnock
"This verdict upholds a sense of accountability, but not true justice. True justice looks like a Black man not having to worry about being harmed, or killed, while on a jog while sleeping in his bed, while living what should be a very long life," said Warnock, a Democrat from Georgia, said on Twitter:
American Civil Liberties Union
"With their verdict, the jury rejected the vestige of Jim Crow and the assertion of white supremacy that was at the centre of this case," Executive Director of ACLU Georgia Andrea Young said in a statement.
US Congresswoman Nikema Williams
Congresswoman Nikema Williams, chair of the Democratic Party of Georgia, said that "while these verdicts are one step towards accountability, they will not bring back Ahmaud or the countless other lives we’ve lost at the hands of white supremacy."
Congressional Black Caucus Chair Joyce Beatty
"This story - although devastating - is not new; we've seen this play out repeatedly. Vigilantes acting with racial animus take the lives of Black men and boys, and claim self-defense when confronted with the consequences of their action. Justice has been served. However, there is still much to work to be done," Congressional Black Caucus Chair Joyce Beatty said in a statement.
Daughter of Martin Luther King
Daughter of Martin Luther King, Jr., Bernice King, said on Twitter, "#AhmaudArbery should be here. The McMichaels and Bryan are indeed guilty of taking his life for no other reason than for him being Black.
I'm praying for and thinking of Ahmaud’s family, including his mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, who in this moment, is still missing her son."