Several couples were sharing their wedding day at the courthouse with the media madhouse that followed the president’s appearance to plead not guilty to 34 felony charges.
In ultra-blue New York City, there was some fun poked at the president’s predicament, as Chandler Dean posted an Instagram story with the hashtag #ArraignedMarriage ahead of his wedding to Carolina Treviño.
Khalia Beckford and Peter Don are college sweethearts who were set to be wed at City Hall next door to the courts.
‘I did not plan for this,’ Beckford told BuzzFeed. ‘I heard about it at work but didn’t know this was happening. But it’s dope. It’s a moment, and it’s not going to ruin my big day. The cameras [are] for me. Everyone came for me.’
Khalia Beckford (pictured left) and Peter Don (pictured right) are college sweethearts who were set to be wed at City Hall next door to the courts where President Donald Trump was arraigned Tuesday
The couple were the first in line at the courthouse at 8:30 a.m. and recalled someone telling them ‘what a day to get married!’
‘I’m not thinking about anything. I’m just thinking about being married and just being happy,’ Beckford added. ‘This is our big day.’
Dean noted that they were literally a one-minute walk from the courtroom where Trump would be arraigned.
‘We find it funny,’ Dean said. ‘We joked that this will get us a nice spike of Getty Images and pictures of this big moment [in our lives] from other photographers.’
A couple named Daniel and Chris picked the day because it was the one-year anniversary of when they met. The pair told NBC News they made it official just as Trump’s motorcade arrived.
The high school sweethearts plan to tie the knot in an official ceremony on April 22 in Houston, the New York Post reported.
‘We just wanted to get this logistical step out of the way and have a nice, intimate, low-key moment before the whirlwind of a big wedding. It’s hard to imagine a more outlandish scene happening just around the corner,’ Dean told Insider.
Dean also posted a TikTok set to the famous Curb Your Enthusiasm video with the caption ‘my fiance and I picked quite a day to get married at the Manhattan courts.’
‘I did not plan for this,’ Beckford said. ‘I heard about it at work but didn’t know this was happening. But it’s dope. It’s a moment, and it’s not going to ruin my big day. The cameras [are] for me. Everyone came for me’
‘We can’t walk anywhere,’ Carmen (pictured left) said as she emerged out of the courthouse from her wedding to Casper (pictured right)
A couple named Daniel and Chris picked the day because it was the one-year anniversary of when they met. They left the courthouse as Trump’s motorcase arrived
One couple was a little more explicit about their joy at being a sideshow to the main event news story, as a new bride exclaimed ‘best wedding gift ever!’
Dean (pictured right) noted that they were literally a one-minute walk from the courtroom where Trump would be arraigned
One couple was a little more explicit about their joy at being a sideshow to the main event news story, as a new bride exclaimed ‘best wedding gift ever!’ according to one tweet.
Another couple told New York Magazine’s Olivia Nuzzi how impractical the whole circus made their wedding.
‘We can’t walk anywhere,’ Carmen said as she emerged out of the courthouse from her wedding to Casper.
Trump pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to 34 counts of falsifying business records as he faced a New York judge – and became the first President of the United States to be arraigned and charged with a crime.
‘Not guilty,’ Trump said when asked how he pleaded.
Trump, 76, sat alongside his defense team in the Manhattan courtroom with his hands folded on his lap and a stony-faced look for the unprecedented hearing in the Stormy Daniels hush money case.
The charges are related to a $30,000 payoff to a doorman trying to sell information about a child that Trump allegedly fathered out of wedlock; $150,000 to former Playboy model Karen McDougal, and a $130,000 payment to Daniels.
The prosecution claims the incidents show Trump plotted to buy damaging stories about himself to keep it under wraps and help his chances of winning the 2016 presidential race.
Donald Trump made history on Tuesday when he stood in a Manhattan court and became the first former President of the United States in history to be indicted on criminal charges
‘It’s not just about one payment,’ District Attorney Alvin Bragg said at a press conference after the hearing. ‘It is 34 business records – 34 false statements and business records. They were concealing criminal conduct.’
All together, the charges – falsifying business records in the first degree – carry a maximum sentence of more than 100 years in prison under New York law, but even if convicted on all charges, it’s unlikely Trump would be sentenced to that much time. Each charge is a low-level felony that carries a maximum of four years in prison for each count.
There was no formal conspiracy charge, but the state of facts released by prosecutors describes how Trump ‘orchestrated a scheme’ with others ‘to influence the 2016 presidential election by identifying and purchasing negative information about him to suppress its publication and benefit the Defendant’s electoral prospects.’
During the hearing, Assistant District Attorney Christopher Conroy argued the payments were part of ‘an unlawful plan to identify and suppress negative information that could have undermined’ Trump’s presidential campaign.
The hearing lasted about an hour. Judge Juan Merchan did not put a gag order on Trump but did warn him not to post anything on social media that could cause unrest among his supporters.
The former president was silent as he entered the courtroom and then as he left. He was released on his own recognizance. The next court hearing is set for December 4th.
Trump attorney Joe Tacopina, after the hearing, told reporters: ‘This was not a good day.’
‘There’s nothing the indictment itself. It is boilerplate. It doesn’t allege any federal crime and the state crime that’s been violated. It doesn’t allege what the false statement is, and it’s really disappointing. It’s sad and we’re going to fight it. We’re going to fight it hard.’
Tacopina said Trump is ‘frustrated. He’s upset, but I’ll tell you what, he’s motivated. And it’s not going to stop him, and it’s not going to slow him down.’
During the hearing, Judge Juan Merchan ordered both sides to calm down after prosecutors complained about Trump’s recent social media posts, including one of him holding a baseball bat against the head of the top prosecutor in the case.
Dino Sajudin, a former Trump doorman, claimed the president had a love child and was paid hush money.
Trump allegedly paid $150,000 to former Playboy model Karen McDougal to keep quiet about an affair – which he denies.
Donald Trump and Stormy Daniels – the case is tied to $130,000 hush money payments made to Daniels
President Trump with his defense team in Manhattan court: (left to right) Todd Blanche, Susan Necheles, Joe Tacopina and Boris Epshteyn
A stony-faced former President Donald Trump snubbed reporters and walked silently into the courtroom after being fingerprinted and processed at the New York Criminal Court Tuesday afternoon
Judge Merchan told the court: ‘I’d encourage counsel for both sides to speak to your witnesses, defense counsel speak to your client and remind them to please refrain from making statements that are likely to incite violence and civil unrest.’
‘Don’t engage in words or conduct which could jeopardize the rule of law as it applies to these proceedings in this courtroom.’
Judge Merchan said he was not issuing a gagging order as had been mooted as Trump is a ‘candidate for President of the United States’ and his ‘First Amendment rights are critically important.’
He also noted that Trump is a ‘candidate for President of the United States’ and his ‘First Amendment rights are critically important.’
But the judge disagreed that ‘certain language is justified by frustration.’
Trump attorney Todd Blanche had told the judge that some of the former president’s harsher statements on social media resulted from his frustration because he ‘believes a grave injustice’ was being done.
As part of Tuesday’s court process, Trump surrendered, was placed under arrest and fingerprinted. He avoided handcuffs and being placed in a cell but glared at the cameras as he made his way from the booking area to face the judge.
He did not have his mug shot taken. And he did not have to pay bail to be released.