Live TV? Former US President's Criminal Charges Might Play Out on TV

  • by:
  • Source: Wayne Dupree
  • 08/14/2023
There is a possibility that Americans may have the opportunity to witness a former president facing criminal charges through live television and phone broadcasts. A judge in Fulton County, Georgia, has ruled on Monday morning to permit cameras in the courtroom if and when a grand jury in the county considers the specific indictment.

Former President Donald Trump has faced legal challenges this year, including an arrest and indictment in Manhattan related to alleged hush money payments to Stormy Daniels. Additionally, he has been indicted twice by federal authorities for his involvement with classified documents seized by the FBI at Mar-a-Lago and his attempts to overturn the 2020 election.


On Monday morning, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis initiated the presentation of her case to a grand jury concerning Trump and several co-conspirators' alleged attempts to overturn the election in Georgia, as reported by multiple media outlets. The former president expressed his usual response by posting a series of impassioned messages on his Truth Social account. He asserted that his phone call was flawless, made unsubstantiated allegations against Willis, and contended that he was facing unjust persecution.

The grand jury is widely expected to decide on issuing what could be President Trump's fourth indictment. In his New York indictment, a photographer was allowed to take a limited number of still photos inside the courtroom, while video recording was prohibited. Federal courts have traditionally been reluctant to permit photography or video during their proceedings. However, the exceptional historical significance of indictments against a former president has led to growing demands for a potential revision of this policy, particularly in the context of Trump's cases. Renderings of Trump's federal indictments were provided by a courtroom sketch artist.

It appears that the Georgia case may now permit the use of video evidence. The Messenger report suggests that a portion of the indictment could potentially be broadcasted.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney is currently presiding over Willis' grand jury proceedings and other routine court matters this week. On Monday morning, he provided instructions to reporters and curious members of the public in his courtroom regarding what they should anticipate.

"If a grand jury presents an indictment, it is typically done in the afternoon, allowing for filming and photography," stated McBurney.

The grand jury convenes exclusively on Mondays and Tuesdays, heightening the sense of anticipation for this week. According to The Messenger's report, if the grand jury decides to indict, the indictment will be delivered from Willis' office to the county courthouse by a representative of the clerk's office, the Fulton County sheriff's office, and the grand jury. It will be presented to McBurney for signing and public disclosure. The names of jurors will be made public at that time as well.


According to McBurney, if an indictment occurs on Monday or Tuesday, it is likely to take place in the afternoon. Additionally, McBurney mentioned that the media will be permitted to film the moment the indictment is made public inside the courtroom. He stated that there will not be a reading of the documents out loud.

There is a lack of reading material. The judge is not informed in advance about the impending indictment until it is formally presented.


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