HomePoliticsCharges possible in summer, DA says

Charges possible in summer, DA says

Fani Willis, the District Attorney of Fulton County, Georgia inside her office chambers in the Fulton County Justice Center Tower in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday, September 20, 2022.

David Walter Banks | The Washington Post | Getty Images

The Georgia prosecutor leading an election-interference probe of former President Donald Trump and his allies said Monday she would announce charging decisions in the matter this summer.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis said she plans to make her announcement during the Fulton County Superior Court’s fourth term, which begins July 11 and ends Sept. 1.

The Atlanta-area prosecutor for the last two years has led a criminal investigation into alleged meddling in Georgia’s 2020 election. The probe began weeks after Trump urged Georgia officials to “find” him enough votes to overturn President Joe Biden‘s victory in the state.

Willis revealed the timeline for her announcement as she warned local law enforcement of “the need for heightened security and preparedness in coming months due to this pending announcement.”

“Open-source intelligence has indicated the announcement of decisions in this case may provoke a significant public reaction,” Willis said in a letter Monday to Fulton County Sheriff Patrick Labat that was obtained by NBC News.

“We have seen in recent years that some may go outside of public expressions of opinion that are protected by the First Amendment to engage in acts of violence that will endanger the safety our community. As leaders, it is incumbent upon us to prepare,” Willis wrote.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution first reported Willis’ letter to Labat.

Trump, who left the White House in 2021 and is now leading the Republican 2024 presidential primary field, surrendered to law enforcement in New York City earlier this month as part of a separate criminal probe by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

Trump pleaded not guilty to dozens of counts of falsifying business records in that case, which centers on multiple hush money payments made in 2016 to two women who alleged they had affairs with Trump years earlier.

Law enforcement officials in Georgia were watching how Trump’s arraignment in Manhattan played out, a source familiar with the Fulton County probe previously told NBC.

Willis in January said that charging decisions in her probe were “imminent.” A special grand jury hearing evidence in the investigation has reportedly recommended charges against multiple people. Portions of the grand jury’s final report, made public in February, showed that the panel believed one or more witnesses may have lied under oath.

Trump is also facing two federal criminal probes being overseen by special counsel Jack Smith.



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