Problems with voting? Call the Election Protection hotline at 866-OUR-VOTE.

(Washington, D.C). – Earlier Tuesday, a federal jury convicted three white men for committing hate crimes and attempting to kidnap Ahmaud Arbery in February 2020. The three men are already serving life sentences in prison after being convicted of murder after a trial in state court. The following is a statement from Damon T. Hewitt, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law:

“Two years ago, Ahmaud Arbery was murdered while out jogging. The pain of that loss continues to reverberate across his family, his community, and the country at large. Unfortunately, Ahmaud’s murder was part of a long history of white supremacist vigilante attacks that have left Black people dead. According to FBI data, Black people remain the most frequent victims of hate crimes nationwide. From the murder of James Byrd Jr., to the killings of Jordan Davis and Trayvon Martin, we have seen too many lives lost. 

“These hate crimes are distinct from other crimes because they are messaging crimes. They send a message to anyone who shares the identity of the targeted victim that they are not welcome or safe in the community. They send a message to other young Black men that it is not safe to go for a jog and a message to Black mothers that they should think twice before encouraging their kids to go outside or get some fresh air.

“The outcome of the federal hate crimes trial in Georgia is essential, as it sends a critical message that vicious attacks of Black people will not be tolerated and that those who choose to engage in vigilante justice will be held accountable. We hope that today’s verdict continues a process of racial reckoning. That reckoning must examine the full costs of a system that allows people to act on racist stereotypes and feel unencumbered in enforcing their own forms of vigilante justice.”


About the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law – The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Lawyers’ Committee), a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, was formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to involve the private bar in providing legal services to address racial discrimination. The principal mission of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is to secure, through the rule of law, equal justice for all, particularly in the areas of voting rights, criminal justice, fair housing and community development, economic justice, educational opportunities, and hate crimes.  For more information, please visit