Donald Trump claims he will be arrested Tuesday in Manhattan probe, prompts protests

Former President Donald Trump said he expects to be arrested Tuesday in connection with an investigation by a Manhattan district attorney and urged his supporters to protest, even as uncertainty remained over whether legal action was actually imminent.

Trump’s advisers made clear on Tuesday that they had no specific knowledge of the timing of any possible indictment, even as the former president made the comments on Truth Social, the social media network he founded.

Trump is under investigation for a $130,000 payment he made just before the 2016 election to get adult movie star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about a past affair. The former president has denied wrongdoing, and federal investigators completed their own investigation into the payments in 2019.

An impeachment against Trump would send the American political world into unprecedented territory — not just the first impeachment against a former president, but one who is in the process of running again for the White House. And his calls for protest also echoed similar statements made by the former president ahead of January 6.

Danielle Filson, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, declined to comment on the former president’s statement.

But testimony from former Trump lawyer Michael Cohenwho arranged the payment and has already been convicted and served time in prison, could help bring the first charges in history against a former president.

On The truth Social On Saturday, Trump called on his supporters to “Protest, take back our nation!”

“The far leading Republican candidate and former President of the United States will be arrested Tuesday next week,” he wrote in all caps.

A Trump spokesman, speaking on background, told USA TODAY that there has been “no announcement” of a possible Trump indictment other than news media and “leaks from the Department of Justice and the DA’s office.”


The New York Attorney General’s office did not immediately respond to USA TODAY’s requests for comment.

Manhattan prosecutors Wednesday met with Daniels. She thanked her lawyer in a tweet to “help me in our continued fight for truth and justice.”

Laurence Tribe, a legal scholar at Harvard Law, said Trump’s threatening indictment in New York is uncharted waters.

“There really is no precedent for impeaching a former president,” Tribe said. “It’s anyone’s guess exactly what would happen.”

Experts say Trump’s arrest is unlikely

Trump says he will still running for president again if he is charged in any of the current investigations into his conduct. His first rally in the 2024 presidential race is scheduled for March 25 in Waco, Texas.

An indictment is not the same as an arrest; it is a formal charge of a crime, while an arrest is when a person is taken into custody. An arrest of Trump is not likely, former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti said.

“Typically, defendants are not arrested in cases like this when they are represented by a lawyer,” he said.

Barbara McQuade, a former federal prosecutor and University of Michigan law professor, said a surrender is more likely in cases like Trump’s.

“Unless he’s a flight risk or danger to the community, surrender typically works in these kinds of cases,” she said. “He would be booked and have his fingerprints and mugshot taken and then probably released on bond.”

Stamme said it is likely that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg will offer Trump a more anonymous way to approach, although it is unlikely that the former president would accept such routes.

“I’m sure he wishes there was an escalator he could go down to turn himself in,” he said. “It is his standard technique to turn everything into publicity, and they will undoubtedly raise a lot of money around his surrender.”

Trump’s call for protests raises concerns

While Trump’s spokesman acknowledged there has been “no announcement” related to the timing of possible criminal charges, the former president’s call for protests raised concerns among law enforcement agencies involved in preparing for such an event.

The call for demonstrations, an official familiar with the arrangements said, may immediately require a larger security footprint in New York and more agents assigned to shadow the former president’s movements.

The official, who is not authorized to comment publicly on the case, was also not aware of a final date for a possible indictment.

Cohen, the former Trump lawyer who testified against him, said Trump’s call to action for his supporters echoes those ahead of the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol attack.

“Donald’s post is eerily reminiscent of his battle cry before the January 6 uprising; including the call for protest,” Cohen told USA TODAY. “By doing so, Anders hopes to inhibit his base, witness another violent clash on his behalf and take advantage of it by soliciting contributions.”

As Trump faces possible charges, W. Ralph Basham, a former Secret Service director, said the prospect raises unprecedented questions for the Secret Service and the limits of the agency’s commitment to providing lifetime protection to the former president. Basham, who served in the George HW Bush administration, said he was unaware of any provision that would allow the agency to drop its protection obligation even if a protégé was sentenced to prison. “We’re in uncharted territory here,” Basham said. “I’m sure the lawyers are scrambling to find answers to those questions.”

“I’m not aware of anything … that would prevent them (Secret Service agents) from escorting a former president to a detention center in the event of a conviction and prison sentence,” Basham said, adding that the agency would then have to consider to “establish a presence” at a detention center during a possible sentence. “I just don’t know,” he said. “The lawyers will have to figure this out.”

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Cast: Kevin Johnson, David Jackson

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trump expects to be arrested Tuesday in the Manhattan investigation

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