Potential jurors should be vaccinated and prosecutors should get to work, according to several motions filed this week in the case against three men charged with murdering Ahmaud Arbery.
25-year-old Arbery was shot to death on a suburban Georgia street last February after three men who suspected him of burglary chased him down and confronted him.
In one motion, the attorney for one of the three defendants, William Roddie Bryan, accused Georgia prosecutors of, “gilding the lily” and deliberately dragging out their investigation. He asked the judge to force them to wrap things up.
He also asked the judge to proactively help potential jurors get vaccinated and to set a date for jury selection as soon as possible.
Another court filing was in response to Bryan’s previous motion to “Disqualify Prosecutor.” The state denied this request stating that the defendant has failed to show any conflict of interest that would disqualify District Attorney Pro Tempore Flynn Broady.
Unlike defendants Greg and Travis McMichael, Bryan invoked his right to a speedy trial. Georgia’s definition of speedy trial varies throughout the state, but in Glynn County, the trial would ordinarily have to have started before the end of 2020.
Speedy trial rules were suspended during COVID-related court closures, but this week the state’s chief judge ordered courts to reopen. Following concern that the backlog of cases will force prosecutors to dismiss charges in some speedy trial cases, the Georgia General Assembly is considering a bill to further suspend speedy trial provisions.