Judge McAfee Splits The Fulton County Baby.

Keith
2 min readMar 15, 2024

Today Judge McAfee issued a compromise decision, literally splitting the Fulton County Prosecutor team baby. You can read the decision HERE.

McAfee ordered that either Fani Willis and her entire prosecuting team be removed from the case, or that Nathan Wade, the man she had an affair with, be removed from the case. As a practical matter, this will mean that Wades departs, and the case moves on.

The judge found that the defendants in the case failed to prove there is an actual conflict of interest in the case to justify forcing the recusal of Willis and her team. However, the judge found the evidence “highlights a significant appearance of impropriety that infects the current structure of the prosecution team — an appearance that must be removed” through one of the two means outlined above.

The court found that any financial flow from Wade to Willis was inconsequential and did not motivate the prosecution in any event. The judge found that none of the conduct involved actually impacted prosecutorial decisions or prejudiced the actual due process of defendants in any way.

The court had some harsh words for Fani Willis, describing her often strident testimony before the court as “unprofessional.” However, nothing rose to the high standards imposed by the Georgia Supreme Court to compel her disqualification. The judge did suggest there were other forums for that to be addressed including the State Ethics Commission, the State Bar and even voters.

The court did find that the relationship with Wade created an appearance of impropriety and that taint (the court used the phrase “odor of mendacity”) would persist so long as Wade remained on the prosecution team. However, the extreme measure of dismissal of the indictment was not justified by this odor. Removing the source of it was deemed sufficient.

The court was also highly critical of Willis’s prepared January 14th speech in church responding to the scandal. The court suggested it danced with publicly prejudicing the defendant’s jury pool and described it as “legally improper” stating it “creates dangerous waters for the District Attorney to wade further into.” The judge indicated he would be favorably inclined to issue a gag order prohibiting further prosecution public comment on the case upon receiving a motion for that.

In the end this is an embarrassment to the prosecution, but not a fatal one.

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Keith

Retired lawyer & Army vet in The Villages of Florida. Lifelong: Republican (pre-Trump), Constitution buff, science nerd & dog lover. Twitter: @KeithDB80