Travis McMichael, Travis McMichael, and William Bryan, a neighbor, were charged with murder in the death of a 25-year-old Black male. The charges stemmed from a cellphone video that was captured on February 23, 2020 and leaked online two years later.
Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley stated to the eight members of the pool, "We can't accomplish this without you," after they were individually questioned by attorneys about their knowledge and understandings regarding Arbery's death, whether they saw the video enough times, and whether or not they believe the shooting was motivated through racism.
Before a final panel consisting of 12 jurors and 4 alternates can be seated, there will be many more to clear in the jury pool. Tuesday was the second day for jury selection. Officials say it could take up to two weeks before the trial can start.
1000 people were sent notices of jury duty in coastal Glynn county. 600 were to report Monday, and the rest on hand for next week.
This large jury pool demonstrates how Arbery’s murders have dominated news, social media feeds, and workplace chatter in the coastal town of around 85,000 people.
These eight individuals will not necessarily be selected to sit on the final jury. They were not among those who had hardened their opinions or faced hardships that made jury duty unfair. The defense and the prosecution will each take turns selecting qualified pool members to make the final jury.
Tuesday's qualified two said that they knew some of the defendants. One of them said that his father was a long-serving prosecutor and worked alongside Greg McMichael shortly before Arbery was murdered.
The man stated, "He's a good friend of mine father and he's visited our house many times."
One said Bryan is her husband and father in law.
Marcus Arbery Sr. was dismissed from the employment of a woman who claimed she knew Arbery's father.
The judge was frustrated at the slow pace. His original schedule called for two groups of potential jurors to be questioned, each consisting of 20 people. He sent the second group home Tuesday afternoon with more than half the morning panel still awaiting to be questioned.
Judge: "I don't have the ability just to store people or keep them more than planned," he said. He added later, "At the speed we're going all these plans we have for moving these panels through aren't going to work."
The court has not yet identified the race of any prospective juror.
Prosecutors claim that Arbery was just jogging along the street, 2 miles (3 km) from his home, when McMichaels grabbed guns to chase him in a pickup truck. Bryan joined the chase in his truck and captured the now-famous cellphone video of Travis McMichael firing three shots at Arbery from close range using a shotgun.
The defense attorneys claim that the men did not commit any crimes. Greg McMichael said that he believed Arbery was an intruder after security cameras had previously captured him entering a nearby house. After Arbery punched him, Travis McMichael shot in self-defense and tried to grab the weapon.
Prosecutors claim there is no evidence Arbery, an unarmed, committed any crime.