FACT CHECK: Does This Photo Show Gov Brian Kemp Posing With Gregory McMichael?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp posing with Gregory McMichael, who has been charged along with his son for the murder of Ahmaud Arbery.

Verdict: False

The photo shows Kemp posing with James Stachowiak, whom the Council on American-Islamic Relations called a “violent anti-Muslim extremist.”

Fact Check:

Gregory McMichael and his son Travis McMichael were recently charged with murder and aggravated assault for the February shooting death of Arbery, an unarmed young black man, in Brunswick, Georgia. The charges came after footage of the shooting circulated on social media, prompting a national outcry for action on the case.

The Facebook post, which features an image of the governor posing with a man wearing an “Allah is not God” shirt, attempts to link Kemp to the elder McMichael.

“Ahmaud Arbery’s Killer Gregory McMichael sling (sic) side GA’s Governor Brian Kemp,” the caption partly reads. “Kemp says he wants to bring justice to Ahmaud’s family … yeah okay!” (RELATED: Were These Trees Cut Down To ‘Make Way For 5G’?)

But the man pictured with the governor is not McMichael. When the photo of the man is compared to McMichael’s publicly available mugshot, that fact becomes clear.

Former police officer Gregory McMichael, 64, poses for a booking photo after he and his son were arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and charged with murder in the shooting death of unarmed black man Ahmaud Arbery, in Brunswick, Georgia, U.S. May 7, 2020. Picture taken May 7, 2020. Glynn County Sheriff?s Office/Handout via REUTERS.

Former police officer Gregory McMichael, 64, poses for a booking photo after he and his son were arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and charged with murder in the shooting death of unarmed black man Ahmaud Arbery, in Brunswick, Georgia, U.S. May 7, 2020. Picture taken May 7, 2020. Glynn County Sheriff?s Office/Handout via REUTERS.

The Daily Caller News Foundation ran a reverse image search and found the photo in a 2018 article from local Georgia outlet WXIA. The article, titled “Kemp distances himself from ‘extremist’ supporter wearing ‘Allah is not God’ shirt,” identifies the man as Stachowiak.

Kemp faced criticism for the photo after it surfaced during his gubernatorial campaign in 2018. He denied knowing Stachowiak, saying to reporters, “On these bus tours you can see (supporters) take hundreds of pictures you know – sometimes a day — and I certainly don’t agree with his extreme views,” according to WXIA.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Reporter
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Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

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