News and Commentary

Man Who Captured Fatal Shooting Of Ahmaud Arbery On Video: ‘I Had Nothing To Do With It’
BRUNSWICK, GA - MAY 06: A marker stands in front of the historic Glynn County courthouse May 6, 2020 in Brunswick, Georgia. Authorities are facing scrutiny over a recently released video that appears to show 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery being gunned down while jogging during a confrontation with an armed father and son on February 23.
Sean Rayford/Getty Images

William Roddie Bryan, the man who recorded the fatal shooting of Ahmaud Arbery last February, spoke to Action News Jax to say that he was only a witness to the shooting and is “trying to get my life back to normal.”

At the time of the incident, Gregory McMichael, 64, told police he was pursuing a male burglary suspect, and that a man named “Roddy” tried to block the suspect after he reversed course and ran in the opposite direction, according to the police report. 

McMichael then stated Travis drive down Burford and attempted to cut off the male. McMichael stated the unidentified male turned around and began running back the direction from which he came and “Roddy ” attempted to block him which was unsuccessful. McMichael stated he then jumped into the bed of the truck and he and Travis continued to Holmes in an attempt to intercept him.

Bryan told the news agency that he’s been in “complete shock,” was only a witness to the situation, and wants his life back to normal. 

“I had nothing to do with it. I’m trying to get my life back to normal, and it’s been smeared for the last week,” said Bryan. “I was told I was a witness and I’m not sure what I am, other than receiving a bunch of threats.”

Alan Tucker, an attorney who claims to have leaked the footage to the media, told First Coast News last week that the guy who took the video is the one who saw Arbery coming out of the house and said ‘that’s him.’”

Bryan’s attorney told The New York Times last Friday that his client never hid the video from authorities, or anyone who asked for it for that matter. 

“Mr. Bryan has never tried to hide anything from anybody,” Kevin Gough, the man’s attorney, told the Times. “If anybody wanted a copy of the video, he would give it to them.”

The video shows Arbery running down the street in the direction of a white pickup truck, where Gregory McMichael and Travis McMichael, father and son, can be seen armed and waiting. When Arbery approaches the truck, he goes around the passenger’s side, and a struggle breaks out between him and Travis McMichael, who is holding a shotgun. Moments later, Arbery falls to the ground. 

Lee Merritt, an attorney for Arbery’s family, tweeted the video last week and said that Ahmaud Arbery “was pursued by three white men that targeted him solely because of his race and murdered him without justification. This is murder.”

In the interview with Action News Jax, Gough said that he expects the Georgia Bureau of Investigations to update him on the status of Bryan’s role in the case soon. Bryan has not been charged with a crime. 

The attorney did not allow Bryan to explain why he was on the scene or his reason for recording, as the investigation is ongoing. 

“My client was responding to what he saw, which was someone in the community he didn’t know being followed by a vehicle he recognized,” said Gough. “Without going into details about the level of crime in this community in this subdivision, I think most people in this subdivision were aware that there were issues.”

Gregory McMichael and Travis McMichael were arrested and charged with murder and aggravated assault last Thursday.

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