New York City braces for Trump arraignment

NEW YORK CITY — Authorities urged people to stay peaceful ahead of former President Donald Trump’s expected arraignment Tuesday in New York City.

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A Manhattan grand jury indicted Trump last week. The charges have yet to be made public, though reports indicated that they came amid an investigation into business-related matters involving the former president, including a $130,000 hush money payment he made to adult film star Stormy Daniels.

Trump said in a social media post that he planned to leave Florida for Trump Tower in New York City on Monday afternoon. He has urged his supporters to protest his arrest and repeatedly and emphatically denied any wrongdoing.

At a news conference Monday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said officials were prepared to deal with any disruption to city life caused by Trump’s court appearance.

“While there may be some rabble-rousers thinking about coming to our city tomorrow, our message is clear and simple: Control yourselves,” Adams said. “New York City is our home not a playground for your misplaced anger.”

The mayor said that authorities had not seen any indication of a “specific credible threat” to the city. Sewell said police were focused on facilitating and safeguarding “the rights of people to express themselves and those going about their daily activity.”

“But I will remind everyone that violence and destruction are not part of legitimate lawful express, and it will never be tolerated in our city,” she said.

Trump urged people to protest and “TAKE OUR NATION BACK!” last month, after learning that the grand jury was likely to issue an indictment. The call stirred fears of political unrest following the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, however, many of his supporters have responded with ambivalence, The Associated Press reported. Since the Jan. 6, 2021, attack, at least 1,000 people have been arrested and charged, according to the Justice Department.

Last week, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., said she planned to be in New York on Tuesday to “support President Trump and protest the tyrants.” She is expected to appear at a rally organized by the New York Young Republican Club, according to event organizers.

Addressing her on Monday, Adams noted that she “is known to spread misinformation and hate speech” and added, “While you’re in town, be on your best behavior.”

“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,” the mayor said.

Trump, who served one term in the White House after losing his re-election bid to President Joe Biden in 2020, is the first U.S. president to face a criminal indictment. He announced last year that he plans to join the 2024 presidential race.

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