Donald Trump Warns of 'Death and Destruction' Ahead of Possible Indictment in N.Y.C.

The president took to Truth Social shortly after midnight to write that "only a degenerate psychopath" would charge him with a crime

Former U.S. President Donald Trump leaves the stage after speaking during an event at his Mar-a-Lago home
Donald Trump. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Donald Trump warned of "death & destruction" in an early Friday morning post on social media, as the country awaits a Manhattan grand jury's vote on whether to indict the former president over an alleged hush money payment made to adult film star Stormy Daniels in 2016.

In a post shared to his website Truth Social after midnight on Friday, 76-year-old Trump claimed he was the "leading candidate (by far!) for the Republican party nomination" in 2024, and alleged that "only a degenerate psychopath that truely [sic] hates the USA!" would charge him with a crime.

From his post: "What kind of person can charge another person, in this case a former President of the United States, who got more votes than any sitting President in history, and leading candidate (by far!) for the Republican Party nomination, with a Crime, when it is known by all that NO Crime has been committed, & also known that potential death & destruction in such a false charge could be catastrophic for our Country? Why & who would do such a thing? Only a degenerate psychopath that truely hates the USA!"

The former president previously posted on social media that he expected to be arrested this past Tuesday, urging his supporters to protest if that happens and "take our nation back."

For law enforcement agencies, Trump's call for protests and suggestions of "death and destruction" have conjured images of Jan. 6, 2021, when the then-president called on a group of supporters to "fight like hell" and "march to the U.S. Capitol" as he continued to claim the election he lost was somehow rigged against him.

Once at the Capitol, his supporters overtook Capitol Police officers (in some cases physically beating them) and entered the building illegally. The mob forced the evacuation of lawmakers in what soon became a deadly scene, leading to multiple investigations, hundreds of arrests and the death of a Capitol officer.

Already, security officials in both New York and Washington, D.C. have been preparing for a possible indictment of Trump, with The New York Times reporting that senior officials from the district attorney's office and the New York Police Department — which handles security where an arraignment would take place — have met to prepare for potential security threats.

Trump's legal issues in New York stem from an alleged sexual encounter he had with Daniels in 2006.

In 2018, the Wall Street Journal reported that he'd arranged a $130,000 payment to the ex-porn star a month before the 2016 election so she'd keep quiet about it. Trump and his longtime (now former) attorney Michael Cohen initially denied the claims of an affair, though Cohen later admitted that there was a payment made to the porn star.

Trump has since admitted he authorized a $130,000 payment to Cohen, but has continued to deny the underlying claims that the two had an affair or that the payment was in any way connected to his campaign.

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Earlier this week, Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy urged "calmness" in the event of an arrest of the former president, saying: "Nobody should harm one another ... We want calmness out there."

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