tv Jose Diaz- Balart Reports MSNBC November 23, 2021 7:00am-8:01am PST
there he goes. this is the white truck. he's still underneath here. there comes somebody in the truck. he's right there. there comes greg mcmichael. he comes around, he gets in. and then mr. albenze starts walking down the street. truck pulls out, there goes his arm. there goes his arm. where is the truck? already pulled out. already pulled out and heading down the street. all right. should you trust the statements of travis mcmichael? well, let's go ahead and first
take a look at this. he told you he's not going to chase or investigate someone who is armed. and yet all he talked about was, well, he kept reaching in his pants, he kept reaching in his pocket. well, did you think he was armed or not? then what'd he tell you? this is what i was thinking. mr. arbery may have run by, maybe matt had seen him. maybe he has broken in. maybe larry english is over at 220. i don't know. maybe ahmaud arbery was caught. maybe ahmaud arbery is running from the police. these are all maybes. he doesn't know anything. these are all the maybes he testified to. he said he assumed he was committing a crime. that's what he said on the
stand. remember, i wrote it out. you said, you assumed you were committing a crime. i went down there to see if it was him. then he said, i don't know. i don't know what he did that day. i don't know. then he wanted to talk about his totality of the circumstances and all that stuff that he knew that was going to allow him to do the citizen's arrest. what'd he talk about? well, i heard from my mom about the stuff stolen off the boat. okay, well, you can't arrest somebody on unsupported gossip of someone else. you can't do that. and then, you know, i saw him inside the house. i knew he was in there a couple of other days, because i had seen video on february 11th, saw these videos. okay, well, that's not having committed a crime in his immediate presence. this is somebody showing you some stuff later. and then, he knew about the white couple. oh, yeah, i knew there were other suspects for stealing the stuff and other suspects who had
gone in the house, the white couple. and he also said, yeah, there was the shady looking guy under the bridge. he was also kind of a suspect. he said, i want to talk to you. i want talk to you. what happened down the road? i was ordering him to stop. what gives you the right to order ahmaud arbery to stop? my impression was that he could be a threat. because who knows what can happen? oh, my god. self-defense. you have to think you're in imminent danger of receiving serious bodily harm or death. it's, i'm about to die! my impression was, he could have been a threat. yeah, who knows what could happen. they said this on the stand.
all right, so what else have we got? if greg had called 911, he still would have been on the phone with 911. we know that. that's how 911 works. they stay on the phone with you. he knew he wasn't on the phone with 911. he told you he didn't know what his father was saying to ahmaud. really? does anybody believe that, that he's in the car with his dad, but he has no idea what it was that his father was actually saying to ahmaud as well as what he was saying? now, what did he talk about? he talked about that, like, continuum of the use of force and blah blah blah. level 2 is commands. okay. i'm sorry, how do police officers command people to do stuff? how do they usually do that? because police officers -- i mean, are they yelling at you? or are they politely saying stuff to you and they're commanding you to do things. do you believe for a minute he
was talking softly to ahmaud arbery. what's going on, what are you doing? please stop for me. do you really believe that for one minute? i'm going to ask you another question. do you think this travis mcmichael who took the stand was the same travis mcmichael from february 23rd? you think they're the same person? or do you think this is trial preparation? what tone of voice do we have being used by the mcmichaels? >> hello! >> 911, what's the address of your emergency? >> uh, i'm out here. there's a black male running down the street -- >> where at scitila shores? >> i don't know what street we're on. >> stop! >> sir? hello?
>> ask yourself, was that the tone of voice being used? well, yes, we know it was. he just said, stop, goddamit, stop, in that tone of voice. all right, use of force continuum. presence. did not have no badge, no uniform, no authority. just some strange guys in a white pickup truck. strangers. verbal commands. they don't have any authorities to use verbal commands. this is a fellow citizen. this is another human being. they're pulling up on him and they're commanding that he stop and talk to him. and then, of course, he skipped level three, level four, level five, went right to deadly force. boom. someone's dead. claims he didn't cut off ahmaud on burford, did not get out with his shotgun. i don't know, do you believe any
of that? told the police he got out of his house on holmes a few houses down and yelled at ahmaud to stop. now he says that didn't happen, and his convenient excuse was, i was really confused. what'd he say the coast guard goals were, to not escalate, but to keep everyone calm and cool. you don't want anything to escalate. but then he tells you, oh, but you pull out a shotgun and point it at somebody to de-escalate a situation. what are you talking about? does this logic make any sense to anybody? >> travis mcmichael never said to the police, i was making an arrest. i was trying to arrest him for the crime of this. wouldn't that really, really important? hey, i was trying to effectuate a citizen's arrest for this crime that i know he committed. wouldn't that be something that you would tell the police? never once. never told mr. arbery that he was under arrest. never said, i saw him commit the crime of "blank," today, because he didn't. he was sitting on his sofa. never said, i was afraid he was going to hurt my dad or pull him
down. never even mentioned being afraid for his dad. not once. anything about the english's both or anything being stolen from 220, never mentioned it. never talked about. it two hour and 45 minute interview, doesn't talk about any of this stuff. assumed the worst. here's what he did. so he stopped and i said, hey, i just want to talk to you, you know, where you running from? where are you going? this is what he said he said. he's asking ahmaud about what he was doing that day, that day. because he didn't know what he had done that day, but he assumed the worst, he must have committed some crime, what's your emergency? there's a black man running down the street. what did agent seacrest tell you? gbi agent, i can't compel anyone to speak to me. they knew better, just like
agent seacrest knows. i can't compel anyone to talk to me. all right, let's go ahead and talk about defendant bryan. 307 burford. you've seen the video, i'm not playing it for you again. it's motion activated on the truck. travis mcmichael's white f-15 pickup truck comes in front. driveway decision. this is important, ladies and gentlemen. this is really important. y'all got him?! why is this important? what does this say? mr. bryan, from his porch, can tell that they are chasing and trying to falsely imprison, stop, define -- confine, mr. arbery. he can tell it from his porch. he knows exactly what they're doing. "y'all got him?!" he knows what they're doing.
and you know what he chooses to do? his independent, independent own decision, i'm going to go join them to try to stop this guy, confine and detain him. h just joins in. his driveway decision. that is what being a party to the crime is. you go to help some people who are committing some crimes. trying to stop this guy and detain him and confine him. he joined in. "y'all got him?!" he knew exactly what the mcmichaels were doing. what did mr. bryan tell you? so i just kind of sat there for a minute and didn't really know what to do. and then he was trucking. so, i mean, he closed in on me quick. as soon as he got up to me, i overshot the road. i was kind of angled. i overshot the road and forced him to go down into the ditch right there. aggravated assault with a pickup truck on mr. bryan's verdict form, check. and i angled my truck at him
again. i think he kind of turned around. i missed him or whatever. "i missed him." he was intending to hit him! "i missed him." when you say, "i missed him," that means you were trying to hit this person. then at the scene, he tells officer minhhsu, one time when i cornered him um here on burford, he was trying to get in my truck. he tried to get in my door. trying to get in my door. or mr. bryan, did you get so close to mr. arbery that mr. arbery had to push off from your truck, getting white fibers from his t-shirt and his palm print on your truck, because you got so close to him, he had to push off to get away from you. "i mean, i can't say for sure that he -- he wasn't on the door. i didn't give him a chance to get to the door. but after iing anned him off the side of the road, you know, and i kind of went on past him, because i didn't hit him -- wish i would have -- might have took him out and not got him shot.
but you know, i probably got past him a little bit and he comes up on me and i could see him in my mirror and he was coming for the door and i seen his hands right behind the door. after i angled him off the side of the road, i kind of went on past him, i didn't give him a chance to get to the door. yeah, towards the entrance, but i confronted him again. i angled at him again." point out aggravated assault number three. "before we got to the road he was laying on, right at the house that's on the left-hand side if you're headed towards the front of the neighborhood." so he cornered him right there. "i was fixing -- i put it in reverse and was going to back up at him. and that's when he made his move to go down the road it happened on." felony murder right. felony murder for attempt at false imprison skpmt aggravated assault with a pickup truck. he kept mr. arbery from running
down satilla shores and redirected him up holmes. but for those actions, mr. arbery would be alive. played a necessary and substantial part in the death of mr. arbery. all right. so i backed up and started going down that way. i think i angled at him again, kind of forced him off the road or something right in here. and he turned around, he turned around right here. the black guy did. he turned around maybe down this far or so, but hep turned around and started running back the other way. and i pulled into a drive or something and started to turn around. fourth aggravated assault with a pickup truck. there's his route. there's the mcmichael route. and here it is altogether. so once again, ladies and gentlemen, the indictment. how in the world could defendant bryan be held responsible if he was in his silverado filming the murder at the time travis
mcmichael murdered ahmaud arbery? how can greg mcmichael be held responsible? okay, it's real simple. party to a crime. the law does, in georgia, believe that everybody who helped, encouraged, advised, went inside a house and grabbed his son and told him to get his shotgun and, come on, they're all equally responsible for the ultimate death of the victim. because a person is a party to a crime only if that person directly commits the crime -- travis mcmichael, pulling the trigger on the shotgun. helps in the commission of the crime -- he wouldn't be able to do that if not for his father and if not for mr. bryan. intentionally advises, encourages -- that's what greg mcmichael's doing. cut him off, cut him off! go this way! no, i'm going to go that way! what are they doing in the truck? they're working together, greg and travis mcmichael. that's why they're both responsible. laura hogue's grandparents said,
greg mcmichael is not a murder. yes, he is. he's just as big a murderer as travis mcmichael is, because he's a party to this crime. when three people chase an unarmed man in two pickup trucks with guns, in order to violate his personal liberty, who gets to claim, "i'm not really responsible for that"? under the law in georgia, no one gets to say that. everybody is responsible. all right. how? all right. i'm going to give you an example. this is just an illustration, just to make a point, okay. four men drive to a bank to commit an armed robbery, okay? you have the driver who never gets out of the car, the lookout who stands outside, you've got a guy who goes in without a gun, and a guy who goes in the bank and shoots the guard, all right? so who's guilty? under the law in georgia, all of them are responsible for aggravated assault for shooting the guard and armed robbery for trying rob the bank or robbing the bank, all right? because they committed the crime or they helped in the commission of the crime or they advised and
encouraged someone to commit the crime. and of course, you're saying, but linda, only one person had their finger on the trigger in this case, and that was travis mcmichael. so how do we find greg mcmichael and william bryan guilty of malice murder? under the law in georgia, it's as if they were all holding the gun together. and in this example, the guy who never got out of the car who's the getaway driver just as guilty. in this example, the guy who got out of the car and just stood at the front of the bank is just as guilty. party to a crime. so under the law, all are involved. why? greg mcmichael, he was seeking to confront ahmaud arbery. he was encouraging travis mcmichael to come with him, encouraging travis to cut him off. greg mcmichael threatened ahmaud to get him to stop. okay? we would not be here if it weren't for greg mcmichael. travis mcmichael. without travis mcmichael deciding to actually take his
shotgun and help his dad. he could have told his dad, we're not doing this, calm down, call the police. there's a whole bunch of decisions that both of them could have made that would have never resulted in ahmaud arbery's death. he decided he's going to drive his pickup truck to chase ahmaud and he got out of that truck with that shotgun. totally and absolutely unnecessarily. mr. bryan, who decided to help the mcmichaels, who then assaulted ahmaud in his pickup truck in an effort to falsely imprison him on burford, without him redirecting ahmaud on to holmes, without bryan chasing ahmaud towards travis mcmichael, we wouldn't be here. because ahmaud arbery would not be dead. doesn't matter who actually pulled the trigger. under the law, they're all guilty. even of malice murder. all right, let's take a look at the crime scene. of note, ahmaud arbery had nothing on him. no bag, no backpack, no burglary. no cell phone, no idea, no
wallet, no keys, no gun, no weapon. nothing. i'm going to show you some crime scene photos. so what do we have? all right. take a look at this. this is what's important in this picture. these pants are so baggy, look at this. look how baggy they are. look where his belt is. he's running like this. there's no way that they believe that he had a gun on him. absolutely no way. mr. arbery was shot. first in the torso and through the wrist, all right? he was shot this way, where it came out this way. so what's he doing when he's coming around that corner, here it is. here it is. his wrist gets shot. there's no way he's hitting him. i don't -- we don't know. did he grab the end of the shotgun, did he try to push it away? who knows. what we doe know is it happened like this and travis mcmichael fired. they struggle over the gun.
yeah, then they're struggling over the gun. two more gunshots and he gets shot under his left armpit. i am going to show you the crime scene photos. so what do we have? why do we know that he got shot in the wrist? because of the blood spatter. the arterial spurt. remember? okay? why is there blood here in the road in this driveway, from the arterial spurt from the wrist. that's how we know the wrist got shot when he was shot in the torso. and there's the evidence of it in the crime scene photos. what do we also know? here's the gunshot wound to the torso. here's the gunshot wound under the armpit. both lethal, lethal injuries. travis mcmichael at the end of his interview, the very end of his interview with the detective, do you remember if he grabbed the shotgun at all? i want to say he did, but i honestly cannot remember. if he grabbed that shotgun, that would be the first thing travis mcmichael would have said.
yeah, he grabbed my shotgun. all right. we are going to talk about greg mcmichael. greg mcmichael did attempt to control the narrative after this took place. he's the one who started this whole thing and now his son has killed someone. and that young man is laying dead in the street from these shotgun blasts. so what does greg mcmichael do? well, while first responders are on the scene, he's going up and telling his kid, you didn't have any choice. he goes over and talks to bryan over what he saw. oh, he's got a video. he talks to diego perez. he's outside the crime scene tape, wandering around, talking to people. someone brings him his phone. a stranger comes up to him, some stranger, some neighbor comes up to him. i mean, this is a crime scene! there is a deceased young man in the middle of the road. and strangers are walking up to him, and what does he tell this stranger? this guy ain't no shuffler, this guy's an asshole!
malice. right there. that's how you know. right there. 2:15 p.m., he's talking to captain tom jump, the head of cid. the head of the criminal investigations division of glenn county police department. while tom jumps, crime scene tech is taking photos, and greg mcmichael drives his white truck from the scene, never got any pictures of the white truck. never got any pictures of the silverado. the white truck was never searched. mr. bryan's truck was never searched. neither of those trucks were impounded. so what do we got? we've got this. outside the crime scene tape, talking to the head of cid.
and take a look at the crime scene photos. what happens next? he drives that truck away. while the crime scene tech is there, taking photos! no one said mr. arbery had a weapon, nobody said mr. arbery made any verbal threats or gestures. nobody said, i saw him commit a crime today. no one said he was making a citizen's arrest. no one was trying to arrest him for the crime of anything. no one ever said these things on february 23rd, 2020. greg mcmichael's statements to the police. these are important. this is why greg mcmichael is guilty. did this guy break into a house today? that's just it, i don't know. that's what i told what's her name out there. i said, listen, you might want to go knock on doors down there, because this guy just done something, because he was fleeing from. i don't know. he might have gone in somebody's house. you can't make a citizen's arrest, because someone's running down the street, and you have no idea what crime they
have committed that day. you can't hold somebody, so the police can show up to go, well, he must have done something. why don't you police officers go figure out what it was that he went and did today? but that's what greg mcmichael told the police. then he was asked, is he picking up anything or going through anything? you know, not that i recall. i don't think the guy's actually stolen anything out of there. or if he did, it was early on in the process. but he keeps going back over there, over and over again, this damn house. no one ever said, we have evidence that they stole out of larry english's boat back on some unknown date so we were trying to arrest him for that. there's never any mention of larry english's house and the stolen items off the boat. not by anybody. my intention was to stop this guy, so that he could be arrested. never says for what. never says what crime it was that he was going to be arrested for. i don't think the guy's actually stolen anything. did he break into a house today?
i don't know. and in that same sentence, he could be arrested, or at least identified. so this is all for identification. this, this whole entire thing, this was all to do what. identify mr. arbery. that's what we're doing. that's what greg michael says. how do you know it was an attack on mr. arbery? strangers with intent to kill. i yelled, stop, or i'll blow your fucking head off or something. i wanted him to know that we weren't playing. this is what he said to the police. now, he got up here and went, oh, yeah, he was just confused, he didn't mean that. he didn't remember what he said. really?! he probably told the police, this is what he said to mr. arbery. we're going to kill you if you don't stop.
greg mcmichael. yeah, he was trapped like a rat. knowledge, intent, that they had committed false imprisonment on holmes drive, right there. greg mcmichael, guilty of all charges. what's your emergency? i'm out here on satilla shores and there's a black man running down the street. yeah, this is what we get. this is what we get. driveway decisions and assumptions, right here. i've gone through all of this, i'm not going to do it again. ladies and gentlemen, they committed fourfulness against ahmaud arbery in violation of
his personal liberty before he finally tried to run around their truck after running for them for five minutes. he was trying to get away from these strangers who were yelling at him, yelling at him, threatening to kill him. and then they killed him. do you have any doubt that they committed all of the charges in the indictment? no. no. remember, a reasonable doubt does not mean a vague or arbitrary doubt, but a doubt for which a reason can be given. in other words, you say it out loud. i doubt william bryan was commit ing aggravated assault with his pickup truck, because it was just reckless conduct. if you can honestly look each other in the eye and say that about mr. bryan, a straight face, ladies and gentlemen,
you're the jury, you decide. this is your search for the truth. if you honestly can look at each other and say that out loud, then find him not guilty of an aggravated assault. find him guilty of a lesser. because you decide. you are glenn county. today, you are glenn county. remember, this isn't about having personal baggage back in the jury room. it's not about a point of view or an agenda or anything like that. that's not what's going on. y'all are really, really smart and you've paid really, really close attention to this case. you're going to determine what really happened based on the evidence and apply the law that the judge gives you to that evidence. it's not about being an advocate for anybody. it's about your search for the truth. i suggest once again that you work from the bottom of the indictment. it's just going to be easier.
criminal attempt at false imprisonment and work your way through it. it will help you logically. remember, party to a crime, when you're talking about greg mcmichael and mr. bryan. you're going to get a verdict firm. the state is asking you to fill it out this way. he's not guilty of simple assault,. for putting ahmaud arbery in reasonable apprehension, fear of using serious bodily injury. i overshot the road and forced him into a ditch. ladies and gentlemen, here's the thing. this isn't about whether these three men are good people or bad people. that's not what this is about.
it's about responsibility. it's about holding people accountable and responsible for their actions. . when they do something like this, they have to be held accountable and responsible. nobody gets a free pass. okay? would you get a free pass? who gets a free pass? no, the law basically says if you commit the crime, you're going to be held responsible. and ladies and gentlemen, when you come back with a guilty verdict on all the charges, this isn't saying somebody is a good person or a bad person, what you're saying is, you know that you committed a crime. now we know that you've committed the crime too. that's all it is. they know what they did. it's not like they don't know what they did. they know exactly what they did and why they did it. it's not a mystery to them. when you come back with your guilty verdict, all you're doing is telling them, we know what you did, too. and we're going to hold you responsible for it. because guess what you did. you turned this young man into that young man.
that's what you did. for absolutely no good reason, at all. ladies and gentlemen, i'm asking you to find all three defendants guilty of all the charges in the indictment. thank you very much. >> all right. excuse me, ladies and gentlemen, we're going to take a ten-minute recess and we're going to come back with the charge of the court. do not begin your discussions or deliberations in this case until you have received the final charge of the court. again, in about ten minutes and we'll come back and get that on to the record. thank you. >> all rise for the jury. >> and good morning. i'm jose diaz-balart. we're just listening to these closing arguments in the trial of the three men accused of killing ahmaud arbery. i would like to apologize for some of the images you may have
seen and the language you may have heard. this is one of the realities of a live trial. joining me now is nbc's cal perry live from the courthouse in brunswick, georgia, and paul butler, a georgetown law school professor, former federal prosecutor and msnbc legal analyst. cal, what's the schedule for today? we hear there's a ten-minute break. what are we expecting? >> reporter: ten-minute recess now and then we're going to have, as the judge says, the jury charges. those are really the jury instructions. so much of what you're going to hear in those jury instructions is what we heard from the prosecution, from the state in their rebuttal this morning, specifically a lot of talk about this citizen's arrest law. now, the defense team interrupted, in fact, the prosecution's rebuttal, closing argument, at least one time, for about 15 minutes to have this ongoing discussion. it was really what we saw on friday. how will the jury be charged with this law? the law, as it reads, and the prosecutor's interesting, she sort of paraphrased it, was this.
quote, the person has to -- if the offense is committed in the person's presence, that's going to be key, jose. in the person's presence, what the prosecution is saying is that, of course, this didn't take place in the presence of each of these three defendants. two of them were at home. one of them joined in the pickup truck later. that really was the key to her closing. she also then finished by talking about accountability. and as you mentioned, sort of the language and some of those photos that we try to censor for the viewer are not censored, for example, on ahmaud arbery's mother. that is why as she sits in the back of the courtroom, she has been joined by so many black pastors. that was a point of contention last week, but it serves to point out for our viewers how difficult it has been on the family members, as they sit through not only these closing arguments, but the entire trial, jose. >> this was a prosecution doing a rebuttal in closing arguments. how unusual is this or is this normal? >> well, there's a rebuttal in every trial, because the government, the prosecution, has
the burden of proof. they get to go first, making their closing argument. then the defendants can respond. and then the prosecution has a final chance to influence the jury. and jose, miss donakowski just showed us how it's done. she connected it to the law that the jury will hear in a few minutes when the judge constructs it. she told a compelling story and she dirtied up the defendants. you want the jurors to feel some righteous anger as a prosecutor. you want, when they go in that room to deliberate, you want them to be mad. and i tell you, jose, i've had some concerns about some of the prosecution's strategic decisions during a trial, but this was an extremely effective closing argument followed by a rebuttal.
>> and paul, i think that's important that we -- that you mention that, because she was very systemic, very almost scientific in the way that she picked apart every single aspect of what happened, when it happened, what the suspects, what the defendants, i should say, said and didn't say to police. i mean, they spoke -- and then, paul, there was the, the explanation of how those pickup trucks were not even searched right after the crime. i mean, it's -- you're right. she was so systemic. paul, i also -- the way that she explained things, to the common, you know, person, that's sitting in that jury box. when she talked about that hypothetical case of four people involved in a bank robbery, one of them shoots the guard and yet all four are also considered to
be equally the gunman, right? the way that they -- that she was able to transfer and explain kind of detailed parts of the law, so that everybody could understand that this is, this is a law that goes right throughout our different judicial systems. >> jose, in her closing statement, the prosecutor schooled the jury on the law of self-defense in georgia. you can't start the fight and claim you were just defending yourself. if you create the situation, you're responsible for the consequences. all mr. arbery was doing, the prosecutor said, was jogging when three white guys in pickup trucks started chasing him. they never told mr. arbery why they were trying to stop him that day. they never told the police anything about a citizen's arrest. so the prosecutors want the jurors to see the citizen's arrest defense as an after fact
justification by defendants who were trying to beat a murder case. >> and paul, i mean, the fact that those pickup trucks at the scene of a crime were not searched, tells you a lot. >> it certainly does. and we understand all of the reasons why this case has gone through so many prosecutors, because there were legitimate concerns about whether police and prosecutors were trial on the side of justice in this case. but i think that this prosecutor, in this trial, as effectively addressed those concerns. there will be justice in this case, and this prosecutor will get a huge amount of credit for that. >> paul, i was also struck by just the horrendous simplicity of what was said when she played that call to police. "what's your emergency?"
"there's a black man running down the street." >> you know, so powerful, in part because there was a lot of evidence about the racism of the defendants that the prosecution couldn't get in, including literally smoking gun evidence that travis mcmichael, who was the actual shooter, after he pumped those three bullets into mr. arbery's body, said the n-word. that's what he said. the jurors never heard about that. but when she has a theme in this closing statement and rebuttal, "what's your emergency?" "there's a black man running down the street." that communicates some of the concerns about the bias of the defendants that motivated this heinous act. >> cal, what's the environment outside the courthouse? >> reporter: you know, today, it's been very, very quiet.
yesterday, we had a protest, it was between 30 and 50 people. a dozen or so of the new black panther party and some members of the black panther party, and what was interesting about the protest, it was what happened in the courtroom. you had one of the defense attorneys immediately move for a mistrial when the judge said he could hear the crowd walking around the court. we immediately went and filmed the crowd walking around the court, because it wasn't that boisterous of a protest. i bring it up, because it shows what the defense has been doing time and time again to move for a mistrial. they've been consistently pointing to what's happening outside the courtroom as a reason for the mistrial. we've had one defense attorney in particular, given golf, he represents william "roddy" bryan who was being discussed at length today in the prosecution. in his defense yesterday, he said, if my client hadn't have been there, it wouldn't have changed the outcome. you heard the prosecution today. you heard from the state saying, not only is that not the case, but he should be accountable
because he was there. and again, you had that reading of the law. so what is happening outside the courtroom is certainly in an attempt by the defense to be brought into the courtroom. the judge has not bought that. in fact, yesterday, the defense attorney moved to have the crowds out here sequestered in one place and not allowed to walk around the building and the judge immediately said it was not something that he was really going to consider doing. as you can imagine, that would be a pretty big controversy, jose. >> cal perry and paul butler, thank you very much. we're going to take a short break. we'll be monitoring any developments coming out of the courtroom. stay with us. you're watching "jose diaz-balart reports." diaz-balart reports. also, we're also learning more about the suspect who police say fled into a holiday parade in wisconsin killing five people. we've got a live report from the scene. people we've got a live report from the scene.
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let's go ahead and get the count. >> paul butler, as we await some -- the jury instructions, what's the process now? >> the judge will instruct the jury on the law, jose. the most complicated issue will be this citizen's arrest law in georgia, that has since been repealed, but the defendants get the benefit of the old law, which was actually based on slave catching.
it was passed in georgia during slavery to allow private white citizens to apprehend escaped enslaved people. under that law, the prosecution argued, citizen's arrests are only allowed when you see the crime going down or you're in hot pursuit of the person who you think committed the crime. and the mcmichaels and mr. bryan can't make either of those, according to the prosecution. and even the defense said that if that's how the jury is instructed, then we're going to lose. >> the prosecutor was asking the jury that if they couldn't find these three suspects guilty of these -- that they should find him -- find him guilty in lesser charges. but it's clear that the prosecution believes that they are guilty of these top charges.
>> that's one thing that this case has in common with the rittenhouse trial, where there were also lesser included offenses that the jury was instructed on, but this is an all or nothing case, i think, jose. either the jury will find that these three men are murderers, or it will let them off. i think there's little room for compromise. >> let's listen into the judge. thank you, paul. >> -- gregory mcmichael and william r. bryan. now that the evidence and the arguments of counsel have been submitted to you, it becomes my duty to give you the final instructions of the court as to the law applicable in this case. as i told you at the outset, it is my duty and responsibility to ascertain the law applicable to this case and to instruct you on that law. you are bound by these instructions. it is your responsibility to ascertain the facts of the case from all the evidence presented. then you must apply the law i give you in the charge to the
facts as you find them to be. it is your duty to follow the law as stated in the instructions i have given you and am about to give you. you should not single out one instruction alone, but must consider all the instructions as a whole. you have a sworn duty to decide this case based upon the law given you by the court and upon the evidence submitted during the trial. the defendants, travis mcmichael, gregory mcmichael, and william r. bryan, in this case, have been indicted each individually and as parties concerned in the commission of a crime, by the grand jury of this county for the offenses of malice murder, felony murder, four counts, aggravated assault, two counts, false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit a felony. the indictment was returned into court on june 24th of 2020. you will have the indictment with you at the end of the case.
and you should consult it for the specific allegations brought by the state. defendants have each entered a plea of not guilty to the indictment. the indictment and the pleas form the issues that you are to decide. neither the indictment nor the pleas of not guilty should be considered as evidence. the defendants are charged in the indictment with crimes that are violations of certain laws of the state of georgia. i want to emphasize to you that the indictment including all of the counts therein and the pleas of not guilty are the legal procedures by which these criminal charges are brought against each defendant. the charges in the plea of not guilty are not evidence of guilty and you should not consider them of evidence or implication of guilt of any crime whatsoever. the defendants are presumed innocent until each is proven guilty. each defendant enters upon the trial of the case with a presumption of innocence in his
favor. and this presumption remains with the defendant until it is overcome by the state with evidence that is sufficient to convince you beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty of the crime or crimes charged. no person shall be convicted of any crime unless and until each element of the crime is proven beyond a reasonable doubt. the burden of proof rests upon the state to prove every material allegation of the indictment and every essential element of the crimes charged beyond a reasonable doubt. however, the state is not required to prove the guilty of the accused beyond all doubt or to a mathematical certainty. a reasonable doubt means just what it says. it is a doubt of a fair-minded, impartial jury, honestly seeking the truth. it is a doubt based upon common sense and reason. it does not mean a vague or arbitrary doubt, but it is a doubt for a reason can be given
because of the consideration of evidence, lack of evidence, a conflict in the evidence, or any combination of these. there is no burden of proof upon the defendants whatsoever and the burden never shifts to the defendant to prove his innocence. when a defense is raised by the evidence, the burden is upon state to negate or disprove it beyond a reasonable doubt. though you may consider all of the evidence as a whole, conviction of one defendant does not necessarily require conviction of another. you, the jury, must determine whether the state has proven the guilty of each defendant beyond a reasonable doubt as to each count. if after giving consideration to all of the facts and circumstances of this case, your minds are wavering, unsettled, or unsatisfied, then that is a doubt of the law. and you must acquit that defendant. but if that doubt does not exist in your minds, about the guilty of the accused, then you will be authorized to convict that
defendant. if the state fails to prove a defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, it would be your duty to acquit that defendant. facts and circumstances that merely placed upon a defendant a grave suspicion of the crime or crimes charged, or that merely raise crimes charged or that mey raise speculation or conjecture of a defendant's guilty are not sufficient to authorize conviction of a defendant. now, your oath requires that you will decide this case based on the evidence. evidence is the means by which any fact put in issue is established or disproved. evidence includes all of the testimony of the witnesses or the equivalent, such as depositions, any exhibits admitted during the trial and stipulations of the attorneys. as i've previously charged you, a stipulation is an agreement between the parties concerning some fact or facts which you as the jury are bound to accept as facts during your deliberations.
evidence does not include the indictment, the plea of not guilty, opening or closing remarks of the attorneys or questions asked by the attorneys. evidence may be either direct or circumstantial or both. in considering the evidence, you may use reasoning and common sense to make deductions and reach conclusions. you should not be concerned about whether the evidence is direct or circumstantial. direct evidence is the testimony of a person who asserts that he or she has actual knowledge of a fact. circumstantial evidence is proof of a set of facts and circumstances that tend to prove or disprove another fact by inference. there's no legal difference in the weight that you may give to either direct or circumstantial evidence. whether dependent upon direct evidence or circumstantial
evidence or both, the true test is whether there is sufficient evidence or whether the evidence is sufficiently convincing to satisfy you beyond a reasonable doubt. if not, you must acquit. if so, you may convict. there's no rule that circumstantial or direct evidence is stronger than the over the conflicting. the comparative weight is a question of fact for the jury to decide. testimony has been given in this case by certain witnesses who are termed experts. expert witnesses are those who because of their training and experience possess knowledge in a particular field that is not common knowledge or known to the average citizen. the law permits expert witnesses to give their opinions based upon that training and experience. you are not required to accept the testimony of any witness, expert or otherwise.
testimony of an expert, like that of all witnesses, is to be given only such weight and credit as you think it is properly entitled to receive. now, the jury must determine the credibility of witnesses. in deciding this, you may consider all of the facts and circumstances of the case, the witness's manner of testifying, the witness's means and opportunity of knowing the facts about which they testify, the nature of the facts about which the witness testified, the probability or impossibility of their testimony, the witness's interest or lack of interest in the outcome of the case, the witness's personal credibility in so far as it may have been shown by the evidence, any evidence of bias for or against a party, any possible motive in testifying if shown by the evidence in that regard, you are
authorized to consider any possible pending prosecutions, negotiated pleas, grants of immunity or leniency or similar matters and whether a witness has been impeached. the question whether a witness has been impeached is whether you, the jury, believe the witness has been proved unworthy belief. the witness may be impeached by disproving the facts to which the witness testified. your assessment of a trial witness's credibility may be affected by comparing or contrasting that testimony to statements or testimony of that same witness before the trial started. it is for you to decide whether there is a reasonable explanation for any inconsistency in a witness's pretrial statements and testimony when compared to the same witness's trial testimony. as with all issues of witness credibility, you, the jury, must apply your common sense and reason to decide what testimony you believe or do not believe.
the testimony of a single witness, if believed, is sufficient to establish a fact. generally there is no legal requirement of corroboration of a witness provided you find the evidence to be sufficient. now, the defendant in a criminal case is under no duty to present any evidence tending to prove innocence and is not required to take the stand and testify in the case. if the defendant elects not to testify, no inference, hurtful, harmful or adverse to the defendant should be drawn by the jury or held against the defendant in any way. a number of statements that the defendants have allegedly made for offered for your consideration. before you may consider any of these as evidence for any purpose, you must determine whether the individual statements were voluntary.
to be voluntary, a statement must be freely and willingly given and without coercion, duress, threats, use of violence, fear of injury or any suggestions or promises of leniency or reward. a statement up induced by a feas not voluntary. to be voluntary, a statement must be the product of a free will and not under compulsion or necessity proved by others. the burden of proof is upon the state to establish the statement was voluntarily, that is, freely and willingly made. if you do not find that the statement was voluntary, you may not consider it for any purpose. you should consider with great care and caution the evidence of any out of court statement allegedly made by a defendant offered by the state. the jury may believe any such statement in whole or in part.
believing that which you find to be true and rejecting that which you find to be untrue. you alone have the duty to apply the general rules for testing the believability of witnesses and decide what weight should be given to all or any part of such evidence. the defendants' out of court statement that is not supported by any other evidence is not sufficient to justify a conviction even if you believe the unsupported statement. however, proof by other evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that the crime alleged has been committed may constitute supporting evidence of a witness's statement. the law does not fix the amount of supporting evidence necessary. you must determine whether or not other evidence sufficiently supports the defendant's statement so as to justify a convection. if you find there was a
statement made by a defendant that was supported by other evidence, the degree of proof necessary to convict is that you be satisfied of the guilty of a defendant beyond any reasonable doubt. any out of court statement made by one of the defendants on trial in this case after the alleged criminal act has ended may be considered only against the person who made the statement and only if you find that such statement was freely and voluntarily made. if you find that an out of court statement was made to the police freely and voluntarily by a defendant on trial in this case, then you are to consider the statement only as against the particular defendant who made it. the court is responsible for determining the inadmissibility of certain statements made in this case. sometimes full audio and or video recordings cannot be
played for you for legal reasons. you are not to make any inferences for or against either party in the case about the fact that the law does not allow the playing of certain recordings by the parties in this case. now, evidence of prior difficulties or lack thereof between one or more of the defendants and mr. arbery has been admitted for the sole purpose of illustrating, if it does, the state of feeling between the defendants and mr. arbery and reasonableness of any alleged fears by the defendants or mr. arbery. whether this evidence illustrates such matters is a matter for you the jury to determine. but you are not to consider such evidence for any other purposes. certain evidence of fingerprint comparison has been admitted by the court for your possible consideration. identification by fingerprint comparison is opinion evidence
and is dependent on the credibility or believability or accuracy of the expert witness called for that purpose as well as the following factors. one, the validity of the theory of identification by fingerprint comparison. two, the credibility of the witness who performs other necessary functions in making the comparison, such as inked finger impressions and latent lifts. and, three, the accuracy of procedures in identifying, preserving, recording and maintaining integrity of the physical evidence, all of which are questions for the jury. now, the defendants are charged with crimes against the laws of this state. a crime is a violation of a statute of this state in which there is a joint operation of act and intention. intent is an essential element of any crime and must be proved by the state beyond a reasonable ub