Defense Lawyer in Ahmaud Arbery Murder Trial Apologizes for Accusing Black Pastors of Intimidating Jury

Defense attorney Kevin Gough apologized for stating that he didn’t want “any more black pastors” in court. (Sean Rayford/Pool via AP)

The defense attorney for one of three white men on trial in Georgia for murdering Ahmaud Arbery apologized Friday, a day after he said he didn’t want “any more black pastors” in court after the Rev. Al Sharpton sat with the slain man’s family.

“My apologies to anyone who might have inadvertently been offended,” attorney Kevin Gough, who represents William “Roddie” Bryan, told the judge before testimony began for the day.

“I will let the court know that if my statements yesterday were overly broad, I will follow up with a more specific motion on Monday putting those concerns in the proper context.”

Gough said he’d been “asked to address some comments” but did not elaborate on who had told him to. The judge clarified that the court hadn’t asked him to apologize.

The defense attorney sparked outrage Thursday after telling Judge Timothy R. Walmsley he was concerned that Sharpton’s presence in court this week was an attempt to intimidate the jury in the high-profile case.

“There’s only so many pastors they can have. If their pastor is Al Sharpton right now, then that’s fine, but then that’s it,” Gough told the judge when the jury was out of the courtroom.

“We don’t want any more black pastors coming in here or others, Jesse Jackson, whoever was in here earlier, sitting with the victim’s family trying to influence the jury in this case.”

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SOURCE: New York Post, Emily Crane

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