Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis said on Wednesday that Georgia state Rep. Park Cannon (D) will not be prosecuted after she was arrested for knocking on Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp’s (R) door as he was signing the Republicans’ voter suppression bill almost two weeks ago.
“After reviewing all of the evidence, I have decided to close this matter,” Willis said in an emailed statement to the Associated Press. “It will not be presented to a grand jury for consideration of indictment, and it is now closed.”
“While some of Representative Cannon’s colleagues and the police officers involved may have found her behavior annoying, such sentiment does not justify a presentment to a grand jury of the allegations in the arrest warrants or any other felony charges,” she continued.
Gerald Griggs, Cannon’s attorney, told the Associated Press, “We are appreciative of the decision of the district attorney after we provided witnesses to her and we plan to speak publicly very soon about our next steps.”
Park was arrested on charges of disrupting general assembly sessions and obstruction of law enforcement officers. A video of the arrest shows the officers dragging the lawmaker, who had not been behaving violently, out of the building.
Cannon said during a press conference last week that she was facing an eight-year prison sentence.
However, “as horrible as that experience was and as difficult as it is to acknowledge that I am facing eight years in prison on unfounded charges, I believe the governor’s signing into law the most comprehensive voter suppression bill in the country is a far more serious crime,” the lawmaker told reporters.
Cannon, who is Black, highlighted how the law reflects the state’s history of racist voter suppression.
“When I see the photo of Kemp strategically positioned under a disgraceful painting of a South Georgia plantation, flanked by a group of six white legislators, all male, in one stroke of the pen I am reminded how important it is to stay focused on the issue at hand,” the lawmaker said.
This is the photo:
1. You've probably seen this picture of Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and his gaggle of white men signing the state's voter suppression law — the new, new Jim Crow. But there's a shocking angle to this story that you haven't heard. Sit down for this one… pic.twitter.com/edHPmyeoiu
— Will Bunch Sign Up For My Newsletter (@Will_Bunch) March 26, 2021