New York, NY – Rev. Al Sharpton released the following statement in response to Judge Timothy Walmsley’s decision to sentence all 3 convicted murderers of Ahmaud Arbery to life in prison on Friday:
“The sentences of the convicted 3 murderers of Ahmaud Arbery is not justice, because justice would be having him alive today. But it is accountability. It shows us that even in the deep south, with 11 white jurors and only 1 Black juror, that white men can now be sentenced to life in prison for killing a Black man, something unimaginable not long ago.
“Last February, when the parents of Ahmaud Arbery notified National Action Network about the case, we immediately went to work supporting the family and lawyers in the fight for accountability. Many never thought that in rural Georgia, with this jury, that we would be saying today that these men will spend the rest of their lives in prison, two of them without the possibility of parole.
“This decision is no comfort to Ahmaud’s mother and father. They still do not have their son. This sentencing says to the nation that if you do not stop fighting, if you have sustained movements, you can make change.
“Whether it’s for George Floyd or Ahmaud Arbery, we have shown that we can win cases even when it appears the facts are against us. But we cannot go case by case. We fight to change laws, and change culture. This decision marks a turning point in understanding that there will be a price to pay for harming or taking Black lives.”
National Action Network is one of the leading civil rights organizations in the Nation with chapters throughout the entire United States. Founded in 1991 by Reverend Al Sharpton, NAN works within the spirit and tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to promote a modern civil rights agenda that includes the fight for one standard of justice, decency and equal opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, nationality or gender. For more information go to www.nationalactionnetwork.net.