(ATLANTA) — The Supreme Court of Georgia on Monday denied former President Donald Trump’s request to quash the work of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis and the findings of a special grand jury she empaneled to review evidence in her probe of alleged misconduct in the wake of the 2020 presidential election.
“This is not the sort of relief that this Court affords, at least absent extraordinary circumstances that Petitioner has not shown are present here,” the court wrote in a five-page order.
Willis officially launched the probe in February 2021, sparked in part by the now-infamous Jan. 2, 2021, phone call Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in which Trump pleaded with Raffensperger to “find 11,780 votes,” the exact number Trump needed to win Georgia.
Trump has publicly denounced the investigation and has denied all wrongdoing in his phone call to Raffensperger.
Attorneys for Trump last week asked the court to step in and remove Willis from the probe and invalidate the work of the special grand jury. They took issue with Willis’ authority to investigate the matter and cited Trump’s bid for the presidency in 2024 as part of their argument.
All the justices of the state’s Supreme Court agreed that Trump had not met a standard that would merit such an intervention, concluding that he failed to meet the “extremely rare circumstances” that would be necessary.
The special grand jury, which was disbanded in January, did not have the ability to return an indictment — only to make recommendations concerning criminal prosecutions. In the publicly released portion of the final report it submitted, the special grand jury revealed no details about any such recommendations, beyond recommending that prosecutors seek indictments against witnesses who they believed may have lied during their testimony.
Last week, Judge Robert McBurney swore in a new grand jury that could ultimately decide the fate of the investigation — including a vote on potential charges against the former president.
Willis has signaled publicly that potential charges could be brought as soon as this summer.
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