Rep. Park Cannon, Georgia Lawmaker Arrested For Protesting Restrictive Voting Bill, Won't Be Prosecuted
An Atlanta district attorney said the case was closed and would not be heading to a grand jury for indictment.
April 07, 2021 at 7:56 pm
Update (April 7, 2021): An Atlanta district attorney said she will not pursue charges against Democratic State Rep. Park Cannon who was arrested after knocking on the office door of Gov. Brian Kemp who was signing into law restrictive voting regulations.
Fani Willis released a statement on Wednesday saying that the case was closed and that it would not be heading to a grand jury for indictment, according to WSB-TV.
"After reviewing all of the evidence, I have decided to close this matter. It will not be presented to a grand jury for consideration of indictment, and it is now closed," the statement read.
"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," the statement continued.
Willis added that her office gathered statements from witnesses and Capitol Police to aid in her conclusion.
The representative's attorney said she should have never been arrested and that "facts and evidence show that Park Cannon committed no crime."
Cannon's attorney, Geral Griggs, said they are now exploring other legal options, although he refrained from specifying their next steps.
The state of Georgia has come under intense backlash since the governor signed the restrictive voting law. Lawmakers say the legislation is discriminatory and mimics Jim Crow-era laws, as Blavity previously reported.
Developing from Rep Park Cannon's attorney @AttorneyGriggs on Fulton DA dropping criminal charges against her: “Facts and evidence show that Park Cannon committed no crime and should never have been arrested. We are weighing our next legal options.” pic.twitter.com/OB31Y7hCxy— Justin Gray (@JustinGrayWSB) April 7, 2021
Kemp doubled down in response, however, saying that the new laws, which include prohibiting volunteers from handing out light refreshments to voters in line, will ensure fair elections in the future.
Original (March 26, 2021): Georgia State Rep. Park Cannon was arrested for protesting Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp's decision to sign a new voting law that will act as a tool of voter suppression, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
In a video shared on social media, police were seen arresting Cannon after she knocked on the door to Kemp's office on Thursday night as he and other Republicans huddled to sign the controversial SB 202 into law.
“Why are you arresting her?” This Facebook Live video from @TWareStevens shows the moment authorities detained state Rep. Park Cannon as @GovKemp was behind those doors signing elections restrictions into law. #gapol pic.twitter.com/U1xMJ6tZrY— Greg Bluestein (@bluestein) March 25, 2021
Cannon, who has been in the Georgia House of Representatives since 2016, was then charged with felony obstruction, according to HuffPost.
Both U.S. senators from Georgia, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, have criticized the state troopers for arresting Cannon. Warnock even flew back to Georgia last night to visit her in jail.
Senator Warnock got on a plane to come down to Rice, where we’re waiting for Rep. Park Cannon to be released pic.twitter.com/c3Z8m9Bu06— abolish police mk (@mary_kathrynnnn) March 26, 2021