The New Enemy for Trump? New Bail Conditions: What Happens If Donald Trump Breaches His Bail Conditions?
Once Donald Trump walks out of Fulton County courthouse today, he will be subject to pre-agreed bail conditions including a $200,000 bond.
The former president has long shared his opinions on those prosecuting him, freely criticizing witnesses or former allies on his social media platform Truth. However, as part of his conditions he is banned from any action or comments which could be seen as intimidation or “otherwise obstruct the administration of justice.”
Specifically, Trump “shall make no direct or indirect threat of any nature” against any person likely to be involved in the case, as well as the community or any property within Fulton County. “The above shall include, but are not limited to, posts on social media or reposts of posts made by another individual on social media,” reads the bond order, entered Monday by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee.
A sudden change in Trump’s outspoken approach is unlikely. Alas, many are wondering what could happen if Trump violates his bail conditions?
Jail Is Unlikely for Donald Trump
As a former president, Trump’s required to have Secret Service personnel by his side at all times. Therefore, any breach is unlikely to land the 77-year-old time in the notorious Fulton County jail.
“Donald Trump isn’t the kind of person you can just throw in the slammer,” Georgia State University law professor Caren Morrison told NBC News. “He’s got to have his security guys, his Secret Service, with him, and they can’t do anything that would possibly jeopardize his personal safety. So, I think it would be extremely difficult to do.”
Judge McAfee’s Role
A breach of conditions does not automatically guarantee jail time.
Instead, Judge McAfee may review any controversial posts and seek an alternative punishment, including warnings, fines, or stricter restrictions on his speech.
Georgia Rep. Tanya Miller, a former prosecutor in the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office, said that the manner of any future Trump posts will influence his Judge McAfee’s decision-making regarding bail conditions.
“The court’s power to ensure that its order is enforced will really depend on the manner in which the accused person has violated that order,” she told NBC. “The remedy can be fashioned to get at that violation, and it can mean revoking a bond, it can mean just adding additional conditions.”
Ultimately, District Attorney Fani Willis – a frequent target of Trump – will have to convince the court that any breaches are significant.
“I would think that if it’s a close call, the state may decide to not be so heavy-handed, just to keep their case clean and moving forward,” Miller said. “But if there is a clear violation on all fours, for example someone has some audiotape of one of the defendants actively engaging in threats or actively trying to influence a witness, then I think the state has an obligation to ensure the integrity of the case and the integrity of the trial.”
Shay Bottomley is a British journalist based in Canada. He has written for the Western Standard, Maidenhead Advertiser, Slough Express, Windsor Express, Berkshire Live and Southend Echo, and has covered notable events including the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
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