In an unfolding legal drama, Special Counsel Jack Smith has unveiled intentions to bring expert testimony regarding cell phone data used by former President Donald Trump during his final days in office. The data, particularly focused on usage patterns on January 6, 2021, is poised to be a cornerstone in the upcoming trial against Trump, who is a leading candidate in the 2024 GOP presidential race.
The trial, earmarked to commence on March 4—just ahead of the pivotal Super Tuesday primaries—will feature a witness with specialized expertise in cellular phone data analysis. This expert is expected to provide insights into the activity on Trump’s White House-issued cell phone, including interactions with the Twitter app.
In a recent court document, Smith detailed that this expert has processed and scrutinized data from Trump’s device and that of another unnamed individual. The examination covered a range of digital footprints, including image analysis and website visitation histories. The findings reportedly reveal precise timelines when Trump’s phone was actively engaged with Twitter around the date of the Capitol riot.
Trump has maintained his innocence, entering a plea of not guilty to a suite of federal charges, including conspiracy to defraud the United States and obstruction of justice, all of which stem from allegations of election interference and the events surrounding January 6.
Beyond the cell phone data, Smith’s investigation has secured Trump’s direct Twitter communications—despite initial resistance from the social media company, now under a new name following Elon Musk’s acquisition. Legal maneuvers from the company sought to restrict access to this data, but court documents unsealed in August disclosed that Smith had successfully obtained not only the messages but also location data, draft tweets, and other account-related information.
As part of the data acquisition, an extensive compilation of actions associated with the “@realdonaldtrump” Twitter handle was surrendered to the investigators. This included drafted and published tweets, liked content, and a log of IP addresses and devices accessing the account.
Simultaneously, Smith has petitioned the Supreme Court to expedite a decision on whether Trump can face prosecution for alleged actions taken in an effort to alter the outcome of the 2020 election. Seeking to skip the usual appellate court review, Smith urged the Supreme Court to take up the case directly. In response, the Court has requested Trump’s legal team to reply to the special counsel’s motion by the forthcoming Wednesday, two days past Smith’s initial ask.
As the legal process unfolds, the Supreme Court’s next conference to deliberate on such cases is scheduled for January 5, 2024, with the recent order from the Court giving no clear indication of its eventual ruling.