New York City police have taken measures to prepare for potential protests ahead of Donald Trump’s expected to surrender to prosecutors on Tuesday.
As per a report by Reuters, they have placed metal barriers around Trump Tower and blocked roads near Manhattan Criminal Courthouse to ensure public safety and maintain order.
The former president is facing criminal charges and is scheduled to appear at the courthouse on Tuesday afternoon. He has been indicted as part of a grand jury investigation into hush money paid to a porn star. This is significant as he is the first former U.S. president to face criminal charges.
Trump describes the probe as a political witch hunt, and top supporters, including Republican lawmaker Marjorie Taylor Greene, say they will go to New York on Tuesday to protest. The downtown courthouse, home to criminal and supreme courts, will shut down some courtrooms ahead of Trump’s expected appearance, a court official said.
According to the New York Police Department (NYPD), there are no credible threats to the city.
However, there have been some concerning reports from the Site Intelligence Group, which monitors online extremism. It has been reported that some social media users have called for the execution of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and the jury that indicted Trump.
Following the 2020 U.S. presidential election, former President Trump made false claims of election fraud and asserted that he won the election.
This led to his supporters storming the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021, which resulted in a deadly riot.
However, despite Trump’s calls for public demonstrations, many of his supporters are expressing concerns about participating in such events.
“(The) department remains ready to respond as needed and will ensure everyone is able to peacefully exercise their rights,” the NYPD said in a statement.
According to a Trump adviser, the former President is expected to fly from Florida to New York on Monday and spend the night at Trump Tower.
Despite being a native New Yorker, Trump did not receive much support in his hometown during the 2020 presidential election, with only 23% of the city voting for him, and 18% in 2016.
The New York Young Republican Club has announced that it plans to hold a protest at a park located across the street from the courthouse where former President Trump will be arraigned.
Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, who is one of Trump’s most ardent supporters in Congress, has also stated that she will attend the demonstration.
“Protesting is a constitutional right,” Greene said on Twitter, adding that she would “protest this unprecedented abuse of our justice system and election interference.”
She said she rejects anyone who incites or commits violence. Before voting to indict Trump, the grand jury heard evidence about a $130,000 payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels in the waning days of the 2016 presidential campaign.
Stephanie Clifford, known by her stage name Stormy Daniels, has alleged that she was paid to keep quiet about a sexual encounter with Donald Trump in 2006. However, Trump has denied the allegations.
As Trump prepares to be arraigned at the courthouse, a court official has revealed that courtrooms on higher floors of the building will be closed at 1 p.m., just before his scheduled 2:15 p.m. (1815 GMT) appearance.