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The Georgia prosecutor heading the probe into whether President Donald Trump broke the law by trying to overturn the election in the state says it will go beyond the president's infamous phone call where he demanded officials 'find' votes that would make him the winner.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis spoke about the scope of her office's probe Thursday night as impeachment managers completed their case against Trump, which referenced the phone call.
'The investigation seems that it will go past just this one phone call that we've discussed,' Willis told MSNBC.
Willis indicated her office was unlikely to seek to depose former President Donald Trump, who made the call to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger where he demanded he 'find 11,780 votes.'
But she said the call may shed light on the whether Trump had mens rea, or criminal intent as a state of mind.
'The other thing you said is a concept in the law and it's mens rea, and you said it's the state of mind of the individual important? Absolutely, when any prosecutor throughout this country is interviewing people and trying to determine if a crime was committed and if they understood what they were doing, the mens rea is always important,' she told interviewer Rachel Maddow.
'Obviously, if one is charged with a crime, they're a defendant and so they have a right to remain silent. And so, no, there would be no intent to depose,' she said.
When a grand jury convenes in March, she said she has advised relevant parties there could be subpoenas.
'So the way to formally ask for an indictment that is compelling as opposed to just a lovely request is to issue a subpoena,' she said. 'And so, what I was doing as a courtesy to people that I respect very much is simply putting them on notice that when a grand jury convened, which would be in March, that they could expect to receive subpoenas.'
Willis, a Democrat, launched the probe this week. She told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution she did not have any 'predetermined opinions.'
She sent a document preservation request to Raffensperger, the state's Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan and state Attorney General Chris Carr.
'I just want to find 11,780 votes,' Trump told Raffensperger in the call audio obtained by the Washington Post that Trump did not deny making.
Trump repeatedly hounded Kemp publicly and privately to call the legislature into a special session after a state hand recount failed to deliver the result he was looking for.
Willis told Maddow she and her office could become targets as a result of their probe – at a time when Washington, D.C. is still under National Guard protection after the Jan. 6th Capitol riot.
'Oh, absolutely. Since we've opened this, we've gotten – my security has doubled,' she said. 'We've gotten a lot of comments. Interestingly enough, the comments are always racist, and it's really just a waste of time and foolishness. It's not going to stop me from doing my job, and I don't think it's an insult to remind me that I'm a black woman,' said the newly elected prosecutor.