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The only way you’ll see Donald Trump’s mugshot is if someone leaks it or he shares it himself

Donald Trump.Donald Trump.

MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

  • Donald Trump will pose for a mugshot ahead of his Tuesday arraignment in New York City. 
  • But don’t expect his mugshot to be released; under New York law, mugshots are not public record. 
  • Trump’s mugshot won’t be made public unless it is leaked or released by Trump himself. 

Don’t expect to soon see former President Donald Trump’s real-life mugshot plastered all over the place.

The indicted former US president will be fingerprinted and will pose for a mugshot ahead of his New York City courtroom arraignment on Tuesday, but the photograph won’t be made public unless it is leaked or released by Trump himself. 

Under New York law, mugshots are not public record. 

In New York, authorities are prohibited from releasing a person’s arrest or booking photos “unless public release of such photographs will serve a specific law enforcement purpose and disclosure is not precluded by any state or federal laws.” 

The New York Police Department told Insider it does not “disseminate mugshots unless we are looking to locate an individual.”

It’s possible that Trump’s mugshot could be leaked as other prominent figures’ booking photos have been in the past.

And according to criminal defense lawyers, nothing is legally barring Trump himself from making his mugshot — which will arguably be one of the most famous in history — see the light of day. 

It’s standard for defendants’ lawyers to get a copy of their clients’ mugshot either at their arraignment or ultimately through the pretrial discovery process, criminal defense lawyers told Insider.

The mugshot copy is typically “a black and white grainy photo,” said high-profile attorney and former Brooklyn prosecutor Arthur Aidala. 

Trump can do “whatever the heck he wants to do” with his mugshot or the discovery materials, white-collar criminal defense attorney and former Manhattan prosecutor Jeremy Saland added.

If the public does get a chance to see Trump’s mugshot, it could cement his status as an “outlaw” among presidents and make him a folk hero for some Americans, according to presidential historian Douglas Brinkley.

“As a presidential historian, I’ve had a hard time connecting him to the tradition of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln and the Roosevelts,” Brinkley told NPR last week of Trump. “But Trump fits very easily into a narrative of folk heroes, like outlaw folk heroes like Al Capone and Dillinger, Billy the Kid.” 

“The public likes their outlaw figure sometimes, and I think that’s where we have to look at President Trump at this point,” Brinkley continued, adding that this is a “monstrous story of huge size and importance” given Trump is the leader of the Republican party and the frontrunner for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination. 

Trump became the first former US president to face criminal charges when he was indicted last Thursday by a Manhattan grand jury. While the charges he’s facing have not yet been made public, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office was investigating Trump’s finances, including his possible role in payments Michael Cohen — Trump’s former personal lawyer — said he made to adult-film Stormy Daniels days before the 2016 election.

An attorney for Trump, Alina Habba, told CNN in an interview on Monday that the potential release of his mugshot is “not going to help anything” and that she has “a problem with the leaking of pictures.”

“Mugshots are for people so that you recognize who they are. He is the most recognized face in the world, let alone the country right now, so there’s no need for that. There’s no need for the theatrics,” said Habba.

And there’s really no reason for Trump to publicly share his own mugshot, Saland told Insider. 

“Other than politics, what’s the benefit here? What does this do for anybody?” said Saland. 

Meanwhile, fake artificial intelligence-generated images of Trump’s mugshot and bogus photos of the former president’s arrest have already spread like wildfire across social media. 

Read the original article on Business Insider
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