A federal jury on Tuesday convicted the men convicted of killing Ahmaud Arbery of hate crimes, ABC News reports.
The jury deliberated for just four hours before finding former police officer Gregory McMichael, his son, Travis McMichael, and their neighbor, William "Roddie" Bryan guilty on all counts.
All three were convicted of racial hate in interference of Arbery’s civil rights and attempted kidnapping.
The McMichaels were also convicted of carrying and brandishing a weapon during the commission of a crime of violence.
Travis McMichael was also found guilty of discharging a firearm in relation to a crime of violence.
The three men were already convicted of murdering Arbery in state court and are serving life sentences.
Georgia prosecutor Jackie Johnson still faces charges of using her position to shield the McMichaels from prosecution.
Deal was rejected:
The conviction comes after a judge rejected a plea deal offered by prosecutors over complaints from Arbery’s family.
Arbery’s family objected to the plea offer, which would have allowed the McMichaels to serve their sentence in federal prison rather than state prison, which they argued was more comfortable and better-resourced.
"We got justice for Ahmaud in the federal and the state," Arbery’s father Marcus said Tuesday.
"I spoke to Kristen Clarke and the lead attorney Tara Lyons, begging them to please not take this plea deal. They ignored my cry. I begged them," Arbery’s mother Wanda Cooper-Jones said. "Even after the family stood before the judge and asked them not to take this plea deal, the lead prosecutor stood up and asked the judge to ignore the family's cry. That's not justice for Ahmaud.”
Attorney General Merrick Garland said after the verdict that the Justice Department would not hesitate to go after people who "commit violent acts that are motivated by bias or hate."
"No one in this country should have to fear the threat of hate-fueled violence. No one should fear being attacked or threatened because of what they look like, where they are from, whom they love, or how they worship. And no one should fear that if they go out for a run, they will be targeted and killed because of the color of their skin," Garland said.
"Although we welcome the jury's verdict, the only acceptable outcome in this matter would have been Mr. Arbery returning safely to his loved ones two years ago,” he added. “His family and his friends should be preparing to celebrate his 28th birthday later this spring not mourning the second anniversary of his death, tomorrow. Ahmad Arbery should be alive today."