Friday, September 18, 2020

Podcast Investigates Ahmaud Arbery Case

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Nationwide For months after three white men chased Ahmaud Arbery to his death, Georgia of 2020 looked disconcertingly like Georgia of 1950. In the third season of the Peabody Award-winning podcast, Buried Truths, host Hank Klibanoff investigates exactly what happened when Ahmaud Arbery took his final jog along the residential streets of Brunswick, GA, when neighbors decided to trap him, when a prosecutor declared that no arrest should be made, and when community members demanded, and kept demanding, justice.

Across the seven episodes, all available for download beginning Wednesday, September 16th on your favorite podcast player and at, Klibanoff applies the same lens through which he's investigated and analyzed other cases of racial injustice from the modern civil rights era. Klibanoff and his undergraduate students at Emory University in Atlanta have spent the summer reviewing the evidence, researching the history, connecting with those who knew Ahmaud Arbery, and others who grew up in the racial climate that produced the men charged with the shooting death of Arbery -- Greg McMichael, Travis McMichael and William "Roddie" Bryan. It’s not about who-done-it, it’s about understanding the historical context -- the why.

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The story of Ahmaud Arbery bears witness to the long arc of racial injustice in the American South -- and to the persistence that brought worldwide attention to coastal Georgia. Buried Truths' deep research reveals details about the case that are both disheartening and inspiring.

“We started with one or two episodes in mind, but my students’ research and interviews produced more and more discoveries that just wouldn’t let go of us and wouldn’t let us stop,” said Klibanoff, the Pulitzer-Prize winning host of Buried Truths who also leads the Georgia Civil Rights Cold Cases Project at Emory University. “The primary characters - victim and perpetrators - have roots that go back to America’s original sin, slavery, so we had a lot of ground to cover and surprising stories to tell. If you thought we were well past the master-slave mentality, please listen.”

With season three, the Peabody Award-winning Buried Truths podcast continues to share a powerful story of injustice and resistance, and it evolves from being a narrative history podcast to one with a laser focus on the discontent, anguish, and dialogue of the present.

Available for Interviews and guest appearances, HANK KLIBANOFF is a veteran journalist, Peabody Award-winning podcast host, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, and a son of the South. Hank co-authored The Race Beat: The PressThe Civil Rights Struggle, and The Awakening of a Nation, which won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for history. A native of Alabama, Hank was a reporter and editor for more than 35 years at Mississippi newspapers, The Boston Globe and The Philadelphia Inquirer before serving as managing editor of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He holds an undergraduate degree in English from Washington University in St. Louis and a master’s degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. The executive producers of season three of Buried Truths are Je-Anne Berry and John Haas. The senior producer is David Barasoain. The writers are Richard Halicks and Hank Klibanoff. Researchers are Jake Busch, Hannah Charak, Jordan Flowers, Cameron Katz, Sage Mason, and Rowan Thomas.

For press inquiries, contact Betsy Helgager Hughes for WABE at 404-771-9793 or

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