A Flint pastor who went down to Georgia to protest outside the courthouse where three men were tried in the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery reacted to the guilty verdicts given on Wednesday.

"Today we can, as people of faith, be encouraged that we know that God heard our prayers," Pastor Ezra Tillman Jr. said.

Ahmaud Arbery was killed Feb. 23, 2020, after a white father and son, Greg and Travis McMichael, armed themselves and pursued the 25-year-Blac…

Prayers made seeking justice for Arbery were answered.

"It was three convictions of three guilty men," Tillman said.

Tillman is the pastor at First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church in Flint. He is glad to see the three men who murdered Arbery convicted of their crimes Wednesday in a Georgia courtroom.

Earlier this month, Tillman went to the Peach State to support Arbery's family. He made the trip after a defense attorney stated he didn't want any more black pastors coming to the trial.

"We went there to pray. We didn't go there to march. We didn't go there to riot. We didn't go there to chant. We went there to actually pray and then in this case we've seen our prayers were answered," Tillman said.

Tillman was quick to point out the guilty verdicts won't bring Arbery back. He feels terrible for Arbery's mother.

"It's the second time she's going to the dinner table at Thanksgiving without her son being there. It's still fresh and she's still having to be dragged through this," Tillman said.

Tillman is hopeful theconvictions send a strong message to everyone.

"You cannot take the law into your own hands. And you cannot accuse someone of being guilty by your opinion of where they belong as a person because of their race. I hope that this is the beginning to many other cases that take place in the future for justice really to be extended to all Americans," Tillman said.

Copyright 2021 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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