Manhattan DA says office intimidation attempts won’t be tolerated after Trump’s call for protests
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg sought to reassure his staff in an internal message that intimidation or threats against them would not be tolerated. The communication comes as his office moves forward with its investigation of former President Donald Trump, who said on Saturday he believed he would be arrested on Tuesday and appealed to his supporters to protest.
“Know that your safety is our top priority,” Bragg said in a memo to bureau staff obtained by NBC News from a senior Manhattan district attorney’s office official.
He added, “We do not condone attempts by our office to intimidate or threaten the rule of law in New York.”
The letter, which was first reported by Politico, did not mention Trump by name and only referred to “an ongoing investigation by this office.”
Trump is under investigation by Bragg’s office over a silent payment made to adult video artist Stormy Daniels during his first presidential campaign.
In a post on his Truth Social Saturday social media site, Trump referenced reports that he may face possible criminal charges in the investigation and said he believed he would be arrested on Tuesday.
Trump, who is running for president again, implored his supporters to protest. “WE MUST SAVE AMERICA!” PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST!!!” he said on Truth Social.
A Trump spokesperson later said there was no notification outside of the “illegal leaks” from the Justice Department and the “attorney’s office.”
Bragg’s email did not elaborate on possible threats to the bureau, but said law enforcement partners “will ensure that any specific or credible threats to the bureau will do under investigation and that all appropriate safeguards are in place”.
His office did not immediately respond to a request for comment late Saturday.
NBC News reported Friday that law enforcement is preparing for a possible indictment of Trump as early as next week.
Former Trump attorney Michael Cohen is a key witness in the case and testified before the grand jury this week. Cohen pleaded guilty in federal court in 2018 to a federal charge related to the payment to Daniels. He was sentenced to three years in federal prison for this and other crimes.
Cohen contends the payment was made at the direction of Trump and was for the “primary purpose of influencing” the 2016 presidential election. Daniels said the two had sex in 2006. The payment was for a nondisclosure agreement, Trump said.
Trump said the payment was legal and that he reimbursed Cohen. Trump tweeted in 2018 that the money “did not come from the campaign” and that the deal had been “a private contract between two parties, known as a nondisclosure agreement, or NDA.”
Trump denied any wrongdoing and called the investigation a continuation of the partisan “witch hunt” against him.