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The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

Explaining the events leading to Trump’s arrest

Tribune Content Agency

After turning himself into Fulton County jail on Aug. 24, former President Donald Trump faces criminal charges and possibly prison time. 

Trump’s surrender to Georgia state officials marks the fourth criminal case this year involving the former head of state. 

The cases against Trump originally began outside of Georgia. Prosecutors in New York, Florida and Washington, D.C. filed charges against Trump before his surrender in Georgia. 

According to the Washington Post, he faces a total of 91 felonies, ranging from forgery to conspiracy against civil rights. 

Trump’s legal troubles began when New York prosecutors accused him of falsifying business records to hide his illicit activities. Allegedly, these private records did not note business expenses but disguised secret payments to Stormy Daniels. 

Daniels, a popular porn star, became infamous after she publicly claimed that she had a sexual relationship with Trump. Prosecutors took the case one step further by arguing that Trump mishandled campaign funds so he could bury any allegations of an extramarital affair.

Donald Trump vehemently denied the felony charges. 

“I never thought anything like this could happen in America. I never thought it could happen,” Trump said during a press conference on April 4. “The only crime that I have committed is fearlessly defending our nation from those who seek to destroy it.” 

While jurors in New York indicted Trump, the Department of Justice built a case based on the seizure of 102 classified documents from his Mar-a-Lago estate. 

The FBI raided his home in search of classified documents received during his presidency. This search and seizure encouraged special counsel Jack Smith to pursue a criminal case. 

“Adherence to the rule of law is a bedrock principle of the Department of Justice,” Smith said when issuing the DOJ’s formal statement. “We have one set of laws in this country, and they apply to everyone. Applying those laws. Collecting facts. That’s what determines the outcome of an investigation. Nothing more. Nothing less.”

Jack Smith also investigated the former president’s supposed efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election. 

When Congress was certifying the 2020 election results, Trump reportedly encouraged Vice President Mike Pence to denounce the election results as fraud. If Pence annulled the election results, Trump could remain in office.

Instead, Pence confirmed that Joe Biden won the election. As a result, hundreds of Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol, seemingly encouraged by the former president.

The case in Georgia focuses on rumors of election fraud made by Trump and his legal team during the 2020 election. 

Georgia acted as a critical swing state, where just 16 votes determined that Biden won the support of the state’s electorate. 

Despite multiple recounts, Trump spread misinformation about Georgia officials’ handling of the election.

The indictments and subsequent trials begin as campaigning ramps up for the 2024 election. While still the frontrunner for the Republican Party, Trump will miss several debates and primaries because of the trials.

Yet, his supporters appear unwavering. CNN’s most recent election poll stated that Trump leads the way with “52% of Republican primary voters.”

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