Alvin Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, thinks the Big Apple’s soaring crime rate is frightening. Bragg filed charges against former President Donald Trump earlier this year in relation to a hush money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
This is especially true of the city’s subway system, where there has been an increase in violence despite modest efforts to crack down for years.
“I know the statistics that transit crime is down,” he told Fox5. “But when one of my family members gets on the train, I get a knot in my stomach.”
Although NYPD statistics show a decline in some criminal activity, the DA’s personal admission that he’s been heavily criticized for being soft on crime fuels the public’s perception of increased crime in the city.
“I live here, I’m raising my family here, so we have a lot more work to do,” Bragg told the outlet. “We do a number of long-term investigations involving wiretaps. We do targeted enforcement, so we are seeing the returns on that investigative work, and we’re going to do that kind of work.”
Despite this, many New York City residents, according to Fox5, do not notice much of a change in the decline in crime rates. In a brief interview with the publication, one building superintendent shared his opinion that crime has gotten out of control while he was in the middle of repainting graffiti near the main entrance.
“Yesterday, you see the car, he’s crushing it, he took the baseball bat, it’s terrible.”
I asked him, “He smashed the car with a baseball bat?” He replied, “Yes.”
“I think it’s still iffy,” remarked another local. It depends on the neighborhood that you’re in and the time of day; you might run into something.”
Long-time city dweller: “Personally, I’ve had no incidents on the streets.” “I see it all the time; I didn’t see nothing change,” said another resident.
In the meantime, a federal judge listened to Trump’s legal counsel’s requests to transfer his “hush money” lawsuit from a Manhattan courtroom to federal court last month.
According to ABC News, a 34-count indictment by Bragg regarding a payment the former president made to Daniels during the 2016 campaign was the subject of approximately three hours of testimony and oral arguments from Trump’s legal team before U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein of the Southern District of New York.
However, the judge gave a hint that he was hesitant to consent to the case being federalized.
“The act for which the president has been indicted does not relate to anything under the color of his office,” Halverstein said during the hearing, adding: “I intend to write and issue a decision within two weeks.”
ABC News reported:
Trump in 2017 wrote monthly reimbursement checks to his then-lawyer, Michael Cohen, from his personal funds having nothing to do with his official duties as president, a prosecutor said during the hearing in arguing to keep Trump’s criminal prosecution in State Supreme Court in Manhattan instead of federal court, where Trump’s defense attorneys say it belongs.
“Writing personal checks, even if he did it in the Oval Office, is not an official act,” the prosecutor, Matthew Colangelo, said.
“The president’s duties are not all-encompassing,” Colangelo, added, according to ABC News. “We know the president can, even when he’s president, have personal papers.”
Although it’s possible that Trump won’t be able to get the case transferred to a federal trial, one legal expert believes his team has already made one “good move.”
Famous Harvard legal expert Alan Dershowitz stated that Team Trump’s decision to sue Cohen, his former personal attorney, for $500 million was the best course of action because he thinks it will strengthen his case and harm Bragg.
Cohen provided testimony to the Manhattan grand jury that charged Trump on accusations of fabricating Daniels-related business records.