Guilty, Guilty, Guilty: Former President Trump Convicted on All 34 Felony Counts

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By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
@/StacyBrownMedia

In a historic and dramatic moment, the jury in New York delivered a resounding verdict on Wednesday, finding former President Donald Trump guilty on all 34 felony counts of falsifying business records. This unprecedented decision marks the first time in American history that a former president has been convicted of criminal charges.

A hush fell over the courtroom late in the afternoon as the jury handed Judge Juan M. Merchan a note. “We the jury have a verdict. We would like an extra 30 minutes to fill out the forms if that’d be possible,” the note read. The jury had deliberated for 9.5 hours over two days after a three-week trial.

The twice-impeached, four-times indicted, and now convicted Trump faced charges connected to a $130,000 hush-money payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels in the days leading up to the 2016 election. The trial featured weeks of tawdry testimony about tabloid deal-making and the alleged sexual encounter between Trump and Daniels. Prosecutors argued that Trump engaged in a fraud against the American people by falsifying records related to the reimbursement of his former lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, who paid Daniels out of his own pocket.

The courtroom was silent as the jury’s verdict was read aloud: “Guilty, guilty, guilty…” repeated 34 times, solidifying the former president’s fate. Trump, who is the presumptive Republican presidential nominee for 2024, now faces a potential sentence ranging from probation to four years in prison. His legal team has already indicated plans to appeal, a process that could extend over several years.

The conviction has drawn sharp reactions from political figures. Shasti Conrad, Chair of the Washington State Democratic Party, declared, “Today’s verdict out of New York affirms what the Washington State Democratic Party has been saying for more than eight years – Convicted Felon Donald Trump is wholly unfit to lead our nation,” Conrad stated. “His conviction today by a jury of his peers demonstrates the lengths Convicted Felon Trump will go to and the laws he will break to get what he wants – another four years of power at the expense of hard-working Americans. The Washington State Democratic Party will never stop fighting for a more perfect union, which is why we will continue to resist Donald Trump’s campaign of lies, grift, and autocratic desires with every fiber of our being every minute of every day until the election is over and we have prevented the end of democracy…again.”

This criminal case is one of four Trump is currently facing, but it is likely the only one that will go to trial before Election Day. Trump faces as much as four years in prison, but because he’s viewed as a first-time offender and the convictions are on low-level felonies, he’ll likely receive probation.

“Today, the criminal justice system worked,” National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) Chair Bobby Henry stated. “As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. alluded to, the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice,” Henry said.

The NNPA is the trade association of the 250 African American-owned newspapers and media companies that comprise the Black Press of America.

“The NNPA congratulates the Manhattan District Attorney, Alvin Bragg, who stood up triumphantly against the criminal acts of former President Trump,” NNPA President Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., stated. “In America, no one should be above the equitable rule of law. In particular, Black America knows too well the horrors of inequity and injustice. In the historic case of New York v. Trump, it now appears that in New York City, finally after centuries of racial oppression, the gavel of justice has now come down on one of the nation’s most zealous criminals who unrepentantly desires to return to the White House in 2024.”

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