Travis McMichael, killer of Ahmaud Arbery, withdraws guilty plea

Travis McMichael, one of three white men convicted of murdering Ahmaud Arbery, withdrew his guilty plea to federal hate-crime charges on Friday and will face trial next week alongside his two codefendants.

McMichael, 36, had said at an earlier hearing this week in the US District Court in Brunswick, Georgia, that he was willing to plead guilty to attacking Arbery because of his "race and color" after reaching a plea agreement with prosecutors.

Arbery was a Black man chased down and shot while jogging.

But he changed his mind this week after US District Judge Lisa Wood rejected that agreement at a hearing on Monday. She said she could not accept it because it bound her to sentencing McMichael to 30 years in federal prison before he was handed back to the state of Georgia to serve out the rest of his life sentence for murder.

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