The news from Atlanta suggests that prosecutors are prepared to present the findings of their investigation into election interference by former President Donald J. Trump and his allies to a grand jury early next week. This raises the possibility that Mr. Trump could face a fourth criminal indictment in the near future. Two witnesses who have received subpoenas to testify before the grand jury, Geoff Duncan, the former lieutenant governor of Georgia, and George Chidi, an independent journalist, have revealed that they have been notified to appear before the grand jury on Tuesday. However, the Fulton County district attorney’s office, which conducted the investigation, could not be reached for comment.
If Mr. Trump is indicted at the state level in Georgia, it would come shortly after a federal indictment, also related to his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election. Unlike with federal convictions, if Mr. Trump were to be re-elected president, he would not be able to pardon himself if convicted of state crimes in Georgia.
Furthermore, while the federal case only names Mr. Trump, there are indications that a Georgia indictment could involve numerous individuals, including well-known and powerful figures, who played roles in the effort to help Mr. Trump overturn his election loss in the state. Mr. Chidi and Mr. Duncan have both confirmed that they have received notices to appear before the grand jury.
The Fulton County district attorney, Fani T. Willis, has spent two-and-a-half years investigating whether Mr. Trump and his allies interfered in the 2020 election in Georgia. Indictments have already been issued against the former president in New York, Florida, and Washington, D.C. In New York, Mr. Trump is facing state charges related to alleged hush money payments to a porn star, while in Miami he is facing federal charges for mishandling classified documents. The federal indictment regarding election interference was announced on August 1st. Mr. Trump has pleaded not guilty in all of these cases.
The Georgia investigation presents the most comprehensive legal challenge so far to the efforts made by Mr. Trump and his advisors to maintain his hold on power. Nearly 20 individuals have been informed that they could face charges as a result of the investigation. In recent legal filings, Mr. Trump’s lawyers have indicated that they believe an indictment in Georgia is inevitable, and the forewoman of a special grand jury that heard evidence for several months last year strongly hinted that the group had recommended Mr. Trump for indictment.
If Mr. Trump is indicted in Georgia, he will need to travel to Atlanta in the days or weeks following to be booked and arraigned. The courthouse already has security measures in place, including barriers around the downtown court complex.