‘Breakdown’ Ep. 7: The immediate aftermath

This viral video of Ahhaud Arbery's last moments made the case nationally known. Now the producers of the AJC's 'Breakdown' podcast have been able to see the bodycam footage from the first police officers on the scene. That footage is the subject of the seventh episode of the 'Breakdown' podcast, now in its eighth season.
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This viral video of Ahhaud Arbery's last moments made the case nationally known. Now the producers of the AJC's 'Breakdown' podcast have been able to see the bodycam footage from the first police officers on the scene. That footage is the subject of the seventh episode of the 'Breakdown' podcast, now in its eighth season.

Watching the police bodycam footage following the death of Ahmaud Arbery is a grim task

Just moments after Travis McMichael killed Ahmaud Arbery with three shotgun blasts, one Glynn County police officer after another arrived at the bloody scene.

The seventh episode of Season 8 of the AJC’s “Breakdown” podcast focuses on recently released bodycam footage taken by some of those officers. They are seen securing the scene and, most importantly, interviewing McMichael, his father Greg McMichael and Roddie Bryan.

Arbery, a 25-year-old Black man, was killed Feb. 23, 2020, in the Satilla Shores neighborhood just outside of coastal Brunswick. The McMichaels and Bryan are charged with murder and are being held without bond awaiting trial.

Watching the bodycam videos was a grim task. Arbery is first seen lying face down in the middle of the road in a puddle of his own blood while the interviews are ongoing.

When one officer rolls him over so he’s face up, that view is horrific. Still, the officer dons plastic gloves and presses one hand over a gaping chest wound until Arbery draws his final breath.

ExploreComplete coverage of the Ahmaud Arbery case

Soon more officers arrive at the scene. One interviews Travis McMichael who has Arbery’s blood on his hands and arms. He’s pacing in a neighbor’s yard and looks extremely disturbed and distraught.

“This just doesn’t look good,” he tells one officer. “I mean, it shocked me. Last thing I’ve ever wanted to do in my life.”

ExploreListen to previous seasons of the AJC's 'Breakdown' podcast

Across the way, Greg McMichael is concerned about his son. “Y’all aren’t going to put him in cuffs, are you?” he asks an officer.

“No,” she answers. “Why would he be in cuffs?”