The city braced itself for an unprecedented presidential courtroom saga as Donald Trump flew in from Florida Monday afternoon to face arraignment before Judge Juan Merchan, acting New York Supreme Court justice, on Tuesday.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams warned that authorities will not allow any violence or vandalism in the wake of former US President Donald Trump’s arraignment in a Manhattan court and said those found responsible for such behaviour will be arrested.
The city braced itself for an unprecedented presidential courtroom saga as Trump flew in from Florida Monday afternoon to face arraignment before Judge Juan Merchan, acting New York Supreme Court justice, on Tuesday. Trump has been indicted by a grand jury in connection with $1,30,000 hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels, making him the first current or former US President to face criminal charges.
A day before the arraignment, Adams told New Yorkers as well as those coming in from outside the state to be on their “best behaviour.” “As always, we will not allow violence or vandalism of any kind, and if one is caught participating in any act of violence, they will be arrested and held accountable, no matter who you are,” he said. “While there may be some rabble-rousers thinking about coming to our city tomorrow, our message is clear and simple: control yourselves. New York City is our home, not a playground for your misplaced anger.” Adams specifically made a reference to Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, saying she is “known to spread misinformation and hate speech”.
The New York Young Republican Club said it along with Greene will hold a “peaceful protest” against Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s “heinous attack” on Trump in the city Tuesday morning, just hours before Trump appears in the Manhattan courthouse for his arraignment at 2.15 pm EST (11.45 pm IST).
Adams, flanked by Deputy Mayor Philip Banks and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell as he addressed New Yorkers, assured that “there has been no specific credible threats to our city at this time” and said everyone should go on with their regular activities.
Sewell said while the New York Police Department is prepared to ensure that everyone is able to have their voices heard peacefully, she reiterated that violence and destruction are not part of legitimate lawful expression and “it will never be tolerated in our city.” City authorities warned residents of street closures near the courts and throughout the city and said they will see an increased police presence in parts of the city.
From the courthouses in Lower Manhattan to the Trump Tower on 5th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, security has been strengthened, with barricades lining the roads and heavy police presence in these neighbourhoods as the city braces for significant demonstrations by Trump supporters and protestors.
Trump and his aides are expected to use his indictment to bolster further support for his 2024 re-election campaign. But there are concerns that his arrest and arraignment could bring with it a repeat of the kind of violence and protest seen during the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol building by pro-Trump rioters in the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election that Trump lost to Joe Biden.
Trump will return to Florida immediately after his arraignment and will not hold any public event in New York City. He is scheduled to deliver remarks at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach later in the evening.