Rep. Karen bassKaren Ruth BassSunday Shows Preview: Biden Administration Faces Rising Inflation Ethics Panel Authorized Bass for K USC Fellowship: Report Democrats Prepare for Avalanche of Retirements After Virginia Defeat MORE (D-Calif.) He said Sunday that the “black shepherds” comment made by a defense attorney representing one of the men accused of murdering Ahmaud Arbery was “despicable.”
Kevin Gough, an attorney representing one of three white men accused of killing Arbery, a black man jogging in Brunswick, Georgia, in February 2020, told the judge Thursday that he did not want any more “members. High Profile of the African American Community ”in the courtroom, arguing that it would influence the jury.
“Obviously, there are a limited number of pastors they can have, and the fact that their pastor is Al Sharpton right now is fine, but that’s about it. We don’t want any more black pastors coming in, or another, Jesse Jackson, whoever was here earlier this week sitting with the victim’s family trying to sway a jury in this case, “Gough said.
“I think the court can understand my concern about bringing in people who really have no connection to this case, other than political interests,” he added.
Asked by the host Jake tapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperKinzinger Says He Hopes Bannon’s Indictment Will Send ‘Chilling Message’ Rising Inflation Gives Manchin Ammunition Former Aide: Trump Would ‘Absolutely’ Impose Some Form Of Autocracy In Second Term MORE On CNN’s “State of the Union” for his reaction to the comments, Bass said it was “despicable”, before criticizing other parts of the long-awaited trial.
“But when they were selecting the jury, remember, they practically selected an all-white jury. And then the judge acknowledged that that was a problem and allowed the jury to sit anyway. So I think that particular test is off to a bad start, ”Bass said.
– State of the Union (@CNNSotu) November 14, 2021
Gough, who represents William “Roddie” Bryan, apologized in court Friday “to anyone who may have been inadvertently offended” for his comments, but they had already sparked outrage from some people, including Sharpton.
The reverend said the comments illustrate “arrogant insensitivity,” according to The Associated Press.
Bass said Sunday that it is “really sad” how the country’s perspective on racial justice has changed since last year’s national protests in the wake of George Floyd’s murder by police in Minneapolis.
“A year ago, we were talking about racial reckoning and it seemed to be an enlightened period. And now we have had great setbacks. And I think people understand that you can use race politically. Carry people. It is a very emotional subject. And I think it’s really sad, ”Bass told Tapper.
The congresswoman said she is “very concerned” about the outcome of the Arbery trial, as well as the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenager accused of killing two and injuring another during protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year after the police – involved shooting Jacob Black, a black man.
In Arbery’s trial, Bryan and his co-defendants, Gregory McMichael and his son, Travis McMichael, face nine criminal charges, including felony murder, in connection with the fatal shooting.
Bryan and the McMichaels say they approached Arbery because they believed he had played a role in a series of robberies and tried to arrest citizens before things turned violent.
In a video taken by Bryan, Travis McMichael is seen shooting Arbery three times from a close distance.
Bass said Sunday that the Arbery case is “a lynching trial.”