Judge Indicates He Will Rule On Fani Willis Disqualification Within 2 Weeks

Judge Scott McAfee indicated Friday that he would issue a ruling on the motion to disqualify Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis within two weeks.

During Friday’s closing arguments, defense attorney John Merchant told McAfee there were “enough facts” in front of him to disqualify Willis, arguing the standard only required finding the appearance of conflict. McAfee said after arguments concluded that he could not make the legal and factual determinations necessary to issue a ruling today, but indicated he hoped to have an answer in the next two weeks.

“There are several legal issues to sort through, several factual determinations that I have to make, and those aren’t ones that I can make at this moment,” he said. “So I will be taking time to make sure I give this case the full consideration it is due. I hope to have an answer for everyone within the next two weeks.”

Adam Abbate, representing the district attorney’s office, argued that the defendants must prove an actual conflict to disqualify Willis, not just the appearance of one. He maintained that there is “no evidence” Willis benefited financially.

“Aren’t we past the speculation and conjecture aspect of this, the core of the financial allegations — that there is a relationship, and that money has changed hands?” McAfee asked Abbate. “There’s maybe still an open question of where the ledger stands, but I think it was conceded that that balance could run in the district attorney’s favor. Is that contested?”

“Yes,” Abbate said, stating that purchases were either made back and forth to “equal” the money that was spent or purchases were reimbursed in cash.

McAfee did not give concrete indication on where he stood, though he did appear to push back when the state cast doubt on the motives of a key witness, Willis’ long-time friend Robin Yeartie, characterizing her as a “disgruntled former employee.”

“She was fighting not to come in here and testify at all. Then she comes in here and testifies. Why would she testify the way she did if she didn’t want to testify so strongly?” McAfee questioned. “I don’t know if I’m quite following that theory.”

Yeartie testified that Willis’ and Wade’s relationship began in 2019, contradicting their claim that it started in 2022 after Wade was hired.


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