Donald Trump was booked and arraigned on federal criminal charges at the U.S. Courthouse in Miami on Tuesday—a first for a former President ever in U.S. history.
He did not have his mugshot taken (an existing photo was submitted), but he was fingerprinted electronically, without ink.
He also had his birthdate and social security number recorded as part of the booking process. Notably, Wednesday, June 14—the day after his federal booking—is Trump’s 77th birthday.
Trump was indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury in Florida on 37 criminal counts related to his retaining classified documents post-Presidency. The charges include 31 counts for willful retention of national defense secrets in violation of the Espionage Act, as well as one count of making false statements, one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice, one count of withholding a document or record, one count of corruptly concealing a document or record, one count of concealing a document in a federal investigation, and one count of a scheme to conceal.
Trump attorney Todd Blanche pleaded “not guilty” to all charges on his client’s behalf.
The grand jury’s indictment followed a search warranted raid on August 8 by FBI agents on Trump’s Florida country club residence, Mar-a-Lago. According to the unsealed indictment, agents found more than 100 documents marked classified during their search of the property. Boxes stored in places such as a ballroom, a bathroom, a shower, an office space, his bedroom and a storage room included classified information from such federal agencies as the CIA, Pentagon, NSA, and the National Reconnaissance Office, among others.
In November, Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed veteran career prosecutor Jack Smith as special counsel in the investigation. According to reports, Smith was in the courtroom when Trump’s attorney entered his not guilty plea.
Crowds outside the courthouse in downtown Miami appeared to be in the dozens or possibly the very low hundreds. Despite beefed up security by the Miami police and other authorities, both Trump supporters and opponents remained energetic but relatively peaceful throughout the event.
Trump continued to call the federal prosecution a political “witch hunt” on his Truth Social media site on Tuesday.
Regarding Trump’s run for reelection in 2024, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said Tuesday he was “simply gonna stay out of it,” noting that Republicans have a “bunch of” Presidential candidates competing for their party’s nomination.
Tuesday marked the second time in as many months that Trump had faced criminal arraignment.
In April Trump was arraigned on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records and conspiracy related to his role in hush money payments during the 2016 campaign season. That indictment came down in New York State court.