Will there be cameras in the courtroom for Trump's arraignment?

Will there be cameras in the courtroom for Trump’s arraignment?

Posted on

Those eager to know more about the charges against former President Donald Trump will have to be in the packed courtroom for his arraignment on Tuesday or wait a little longer for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office to release the indictment after a judge ruled Monday that video of the proceedings would not be allowed.

Several media organizations, including CBS News, had petitioned to allow video and photo coverage of Trump’s arraignment, but New York has one of the strictest policies in the country against cameras in the courtroom, according to The Fund for Modern Courts, a nonpartisan nonprofit. 

Judge Juan Merchan ruled that five photographers would be allowed in the courtroom before the arraignment begins to take still photos “for several minutes.” After that, “No further photography will be permitted in the courtroom.” Electronic devices, including cell phones and laptops, will also not be permitted.

Cameras will be allowed in the hallways of the courthouse, Merchan ruled.

Trump’s legal team wanted cameras kept out of the courtroom, saying they would “create a circus-like atmosphere,” “raise unique security concerns” and are “inconsistent with President Trump’s presumption of innocence.”

“This case presents extraordinary security concerns (including Secret Service-related concerns) and we submit that any video or photography of the proceedings will only heighten these serious concerns,” Trump’s attorneys wrote to Merchan on Monday. 

The attorneys also said that any video or photography of the proceedings “will detract from both the dignity and decorum of the proceedings” and “interfere with the fair administration of justice.” 

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, which is prosecuting Trump, did not take a position on whether cameras should be allowed in the courtroom in its own letter to Merchan on Monday. But the letter noted that New York’s highest court has upheld the constitutionality of the law prohibiting audio and visual coverage of most courtroom proceedings. 

“It would thus be a defensible exercise of the Court’s discretion to exclude or restrict videography, photography, and radio coverage of the arraignment in the interest of avoiding potential prejudice to the defendant, maintaining an orderly proceeding, assuring the safety of the participants in the proceeding, or for other reasons within the Court’s broad authority to manage and control these proceedings,” assistant District Attorney Matthew Colangelo wrote. 

Colangelo also noted that Merchan allowed photography before the start of proceedings in another high-profile case against the Trump Organization.

A grand jury voted last week to indict Trump in a case related to payments made to porn star Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

—Matt Mosk and Nick Poser contributed.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *