For The Record

Fulton grand jury report on Trump 2020 election finds basis for perjury charges, no hint of voter fraud

By: - February 16, 2023 5:20 pm

Fulton County Judge Robert McBurney heard arguments in August about whether Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp should be forced to testify before a special grand jury investigating interference in the 2020 presidential election. Stanley Dunlap/Georgia Recorder

A Fulton County special grand jury is recommending that the district attorney pursue charges against witnesses in the investigation into efforts by former President Donald Trump and his allies to overturn his Georgia 2020 election loss.

The first portions of the grand jury’s final report made public on Thursday states that a majority of jurors believe at least one of the 75 witnesses perjured themselves while testifying about President Joe Biden’s narrow election win as it met from June to December. A preview of the 23-member panel’s final report was released Thursday by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney, providing the public with its first glimpse into the panel’s findings after months of testimony behind closed courtroom doors.

The documents made public do not mention any names or if there were any other crimes that the panel believes were committed. The 23 jurors heard testimony from a wide range of witnesses, including people with direct connections to Trump, election experts, poll workers, elected officials and state employees and sent a final report to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis on Dec. 22.

Earlier this week, McBurney the report’s introduction, conclusion, as well as a segment in which grand jurors discussed their concern that some witnesses may have lied under oath during their testimony, would be released. McBurney said the panel’s recommendations on who should be charged with state crimes would remain under seal until Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis decides whether to charge those people.

At the Jan. 24 court hearing, Willis said her decision on whether to pursue charges was “imminent,” and Brookings Institute Report and political experts with Defend Our Democracy have predicted that multiple people, including possibly Trump, will be indicted for charges that could include conspiracy to commit election fraud and other offenses.

The investigation was initiated by Willis in February 2021 as Trump and many of his supporters, including White House staff, Congressmen, attorneys, and other members of his inner circle, attempted to sow seeds of doubt by disputing the election results in Georgia as well as several other states where he lost to Democrats. 

The Fulton probe kicked into high gear after the January 2021 public release of a recorded phone call in which Trump pressed Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” enough ballots to overcome Biden’s victory.

In Georgia, a tally of just under 12,000 votes separated Biden from Trump in an election with a record-breaking turnout of 7 million voters.

The special grand jury does not have the power to indict like a regular grand jury but has the ability to meet over a longer period of time. At the end of the process, a report was written that provided recommendations for who the prosecutor should indict and what kind of crime they might have committed.

The Fulton special grand jury’s report says the panel unanimously agreed that there was no widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election. 

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, and former Trump attorney Rudolph Giuliani were among the notable witnesses called by Willis who had publicly claimed that the election had been rigged. Testimony was given by Georgia Republicans Gov. Brian Kemp and Raffensperger, who both rejected attempts by the former president to overturn the election results. 

Another witness was Georgia Republican Party Chairman David Shafer, who served as one of the 16 fake electors who turned in fraudulent documents certifying Trump’s victory. 


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Stanley Dunlap
Stanley Dunlap

Stanley Dunlap has covered government and politics for news outlets in Georgia and Tennessee for the past decade. The Georgia Associated Press Managing Editors named Stanley a finalist for best deadline reporting. The Tennessee Press Association honored him for his reporting on the disappearance of Holly Bobo.