Former NY prosecutor on Trump hush money trial: ‘He’s going to have to sit there’

Former Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Catherine Christian said she will be closely monitoring former President Trump’s behavior in his first criminal trial, scheduled for Monday.

Christian noted that unlike his previous civil trials, Trump will “have to sit there” and hear the things he may not want to.

“I will be watching for Donald Trump’s behavior,” Christian said Saturday on NBC. “Unlike the civil case of E. Jean Carroll, where he got up and walked out of the courtroom because he didn’t like what he was hearing, he can’t do that in a criminal trial. No one can do that.”

“None of the prosecutors, the defense attorneys or Donald Trump,” she continued. “He’s going to have to sit there. He will only be able to leave when there’s a break.”

Despite his attempts to get the case delayed past the November election, Trump’s hush money trial is set to begin Monday with jury selection. The highly publicized case will mark the first criminal trial of a former president.

The case is set to have two key witnesses: adult film star Stormy Daniels and Trump’s former fixer Michael Cohen. The case alleges the former president illegally falsified business records reimbursing Cohen for paying Daniels to conceal an alleged affair ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

Trump has lashed out at Judge Juan Merchan, his daughter and others in the case, even after he was hit with a gag order. Christian wondered on air if Trump will “be able to remember” the order during the trial if he gets upset.

“Will he be able to refrain from doing that? Will he be able to refrain from making statements about prospective witnesses? Will he be able to refrain from making statements about the [district attorney’s] staff?” she questioned.

“He’s going to hear things that will probably irritate him and …  at the lunch break and at the conclusion of the day, there’ll be cameras and microphones in front of him,” Christian said.

The former president was asked about the looming trial Friday during a joint press conference with House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) at his Mar-a-Lago resort. Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee for the White House, said the jury selection would be “largely luck” and said he would “absolutely” testify if asked.

Story updated April 14 at 11:27 a.m.

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