Racist threats have been pouring into the offices of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg from supporters of former President Donald Trump.
The DA’s office received more than 1,000 calls and emails from Trump supporters since March 18, the day when Trump inaccurately predicted his own arrest, Bragg revealed on Tuesday. Many of those messages have been “overtly racist and antisemitic,” Bragg’s office said.
One email read: “Hay George Soros asshole puppet If you want President Trump come and get me. Remember we are everywhere and we have guns.”
Others called Bragg, the first Black man ever elected top prosecutor of New York County, “black trash” and “Aids Infested.”
The threats follow Bragg’s decision to charge Trump with 34 felony counts for allegedly falsifying documents related to the hush money payoff of adult film actress Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election. Daniels claims she slept with Trump in 2006, but Trump denies her story and entered a not guilty plea in a Manhattan courtroom on April 4.
Trump has unleashed his own incendiary language against Bragg, warning the case could unleash “death & destruction” and calling Bragg a “racist” and an “animal. Someone on Trump’s team used his account to post a picture of Trump holding a baseball bat over Bragg’s head on his Truth Social account, although Trump’s lawyer denied that Trump posted that image himself.
In at least two instances, threats have spilled over into real life.
Bragg received an envelope containing white powder and a specific death threat against him. The letter was immediately contained to prevent exposure, and was later determined to contain no dangerous substance, according to a letter Bragg later circulated to his staff.
On March 28, a Trump supporter protesting Bragg’s investigation pulled a knife on a family, including two children, Bragg’s office said. The protester, a 39-year-old woman, carried a sign that read: “I support Trump, do you?” The protester was arrested.
Bragg’s office detailed the wave of threats in a lawsuit filed by Bragg against GOP firebrand, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio. The suit aims to stop Jordan from subpoenaing a former prosecutor for Bragg’s office, Mark Pomerantz, from testifying in response to a subpoena from the House Judiciary Committee, which Jordan heads.
The Judge overseeing the case asked Trump to refrain from making statements that could incite unrest or disrupt the proceedings of the court. Later that evening, Trump mocked the judge’s wife and daughter. The next day, Trump called the New York officials who charged him with crimes “perverts.”
Trump’s inner circle has been openly worrying that the judge could place a gag order on Trump, which could block Trump from speaking about the case on threat of contempt of court and potential jail time. Judge Merchan said during Trump’s arraignment that a gag order is not “close,” but suggested his patience for Trump’s poisonous language may not be limitless.
Trump’s lawyer Todd Blanche told Judge Merchan that Trump has been speaking out forcefully because he is “frustrated” by leaks in the media about his criminal case. Blanche insisted Trump doesn’t intend to menace anyone.
“These posts are not threats, they are not harassment,” Blanche told the judge. “He has rights, he's allowed to speak publicly.”
The New York courts have beefed up security measures, a court spokesperson said last week.
“We have maintained an increased security presence in and around courthouses and throughout the judiciary and will adjust protocols as necessary,” New York state courts spokesperson Lucian Chalfen told VICE News. “We continue to evaluate and reevaluate security concerns and potential threats.”