Statement on Governor Kemp Signing Citizen’s Arrest Reform

Contact: Nekeidra Taylor Communications Director E: nekeidra@gahousedems.com

May 10, 2021 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ATLANTA-- Today, Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) signed the citizen’s arrest law, HB 479, a law championed by Georgia House Democrats long before a video was released last year showing the heartless murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Flanked by Democrats, Republicans, and the Arbery family, the signing of the law was long awaited and a victory for all Georgians.

“Today, I am proud of our members for advocating for a repeal of the citizen’s arrest law in Georgia in the wake of the Ahmaud Arbery case. This was a senseless act and the repeal of the citizen’s arrest law is a move in the right direction for Georgia and beyond,” stated House Minority Leader James Beverly. “The former law propagated suspicion and violence between our neighbors– there is no place for that here in our state. I am additionally thankful that the Governor and other members of the Republican leadership joined us on this important issue in order to protect our family members and community,” said Leader Beverly.

Representatives Carl Gillard, Gloria Frazier, and William Boddie were key sponsors to reforming the antiquated citizen’s arrest statute in the state of Georgia. Reforming citizen’s arrest is a part of the Liberties section of the Georgia House Democrats legislative agenda, joined by other legislative priorities that strengthen the civil liberties of our citizens.

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