A special grand jury will be impaneled to help a prosecutor in Georgia investigate alleged interference in the 2020 election by former President Donald Trump and some of his associates, according to court documents.
A majority of Fulton County Superior Court judges agreed to a request for the grand jury from Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, a Democrat, according to Chief Judge Christopher Brashe.
The grand jury will be drawn and impaneled with the goal of starting their work on May 2.
The grand jury will work for no longer than 12 months, Brashe said in a two-page order, though certain periods of time will not count, including times when members cannot meet “for safety or other reasons.”
“The special purpose grand jury shall be authorized to investigate any and all facts and circumstances relating directly or indirectly to alleged violations of the laws of the State of Georgia,” he said.
Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney was named to supervise and assist the grand jury.
Willis asked last week for the grand jury to help with her investigation, which is based on information that indicates “a reasonable probability” that the 2020 election in Georgia was “subject to possible criminal disruptions.”
She said the grand jury was required because “a significant number of witnesses and prospective witnesses have refused to cooperate with the investigation absent a subpoena requiring their testimony.”
As an example, she noted that Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has said during a recent television appearance that he would not participate in an interview or otherwise offer evidence unless he was presented with a subpoena.
Because Trump or others being probed contacted other agencies that could have investigated the matter, such as Raffensperger’s office, the investigation is being carried out by Willis and her office.
Trump called Raffensperger in December 2020, though that call was misrepresented by the Republican’s office to news outlets, resulting in a slew of corrections months later. Trump asked the secretary of state during the call to probe potential voter fraud. Raffensperger declined, noting the state did several re-tallies of the vote count.
Trump and his Save America PAC did not return a request for comment.
Trump said last week that “I didn’t say anything wrong in the call, made while I was President on behalf of the United States of America, to look into the massive voter fraud which took place in Georgia.”
He noted that Georgia just started probing illegal ballot harvesting in the 2020 election before adding: “What this Civil Special Grand Jury should be looking into is not my perfect phone call, but the large scale voter fraud that took place in Georgia. Then they would be doing a great job for the people. No more political witch hunts!”