Aug 15, 2023 - Politics

Trump grand jury decision came faster than predicted

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney receives documents from County Court Clerk Che Alexander. Photo: Megan Varner/Getty Images

Atlanta residents and people across the country spent Monday hovered over their phones and computers, anxiously waiting to hear if a Fulton County grand jury would indict former President Donald Trump and his associates on charges related to their alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia.

Driving the news: Grand jury proceedings moved quicker than anticipated, with the courthouse staying open well beyond normal operating hours on Monday in order to deliver the indictments before the day was over — and without hearing from all of the witnesses who were subpoenaed to testify.

  • The documents were presented to Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney around 9pm and handed off to the court clerk to be uploaded into the system for public consumption.
  • Around 11pm, the indictment appeared online.

Former Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan appeared before the grand jury yesterday, despite being originally scheduled to testify today, the AJC reports.

  • Duncan told reporters following his testimony that the investigation should serve as a "pivot point" for Republicans in the state. The former president warned Duncan, who has been openly critical of Trump's false election claims, not to testify.
  • Former state representative Bee Nguyen, former state senator Jen Jordan and Gabriel Sterling, the chief operating officer for the Secretary of State's Office, all appeared in court yesterday.

Quick take: The anticipation of a decision reverberated across the city when a document spelling out potential charges against Trump appeared briefly on the Fulton County clerk of courts' website.

  • That led some journalists to proclaim that Trump had been charged, but the document was quickly removed from the website.

The intrigue: Trump's possible trial could likely be televised in Georgia, as state law requires proceedings be filmed with the approval of a judge, Axios' Ivana Saric reports.

  • Under Georgia's rules, the public could be able to watch Trump's potential arraignment — as well as an entire potential criminal trial, per NBC News.

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