Former U.S. President Donald J. Trump surrendered himself to the Fulton County Jail in Atlanta Georgia on August 24th and had his mugshot taken.
This makes him the first former United States president to go through that process, despite a storied history of former presidents who’d had to skirmish with the law during, before, or after their tenures.
The curiously historic situation unfolded after Trump -who’d previously been indicted on three different occasions but always avoided a police mugshot photo- appeared in Fulton County to face charges on 13 different counts.
These charges stem from allegations that the controversial former president had made “criminal efforts” to overturn the 2020 election results in Georgia according to Fulton County Sheriff Pat Labat.
The charges in Fulton County are widely being seen as symbolic of wider potential charges in other jurisdictions that could also be leveled against Trump in the near future.
Sheriff Labat stated to the media that Trump would be treated just like anyone else being processed for charges, including a booking photo. In his own words,
“Unless somebody tells me differently, we are following our normal practices, and so it doesn’t matter your status, we’ll have a mugshot ready for you,”
Ironically, before this historic real mugshot was forced upon trump, his own campaign had itself used fake mugshot photos of the 2024 presidential candidate for its own fundraising efforts.
Aside from Donald Trump himself, 18 co-defendants also had their mugshots taken by the Fulton County Sheriff’s office.
Among these were former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s former lawyer Jenna Ellis, and even the former chairman of the Georgia Republican Party.
For Giuliani, a former tough-on-crime mayor who heavily promoted his claims of having cleaned up the streets of New York City during his tenure, now having his own booking photo might be especially galling.
Given the former president’s penchant for manipulating just about any accusations and circumstances in his favor, he and his staff will undoubtedly do what they can to turn his real booking photo into a PR opportunity.
As was the case with his own fake mugshots, this PR will likely revolve around accusations of a perceived ideological witch hunt against him by the U.S. government.
This is what Republican analysts are also predicting. And Trump himself has already made a characteristically bellicose statement about the situation, saying.
“I have to start getting ready to head down to Atlanta, Georgia, where Murder and other Violent Crimes have reached levels never seen before, to get ARRESTED by a Radical Left, Lowlife District Attorney, Fani Willis,”
The former president was later released on a $200,000 bail from Fulton County jail and will probably be entering a plea against the charges in early September of this year.
Whatever the political and legal outcome of these charges and Trump’s bid to be president again, the mugshot of the ex-president and media personality will without a doubt become historically famous.
Police booking photography is hardly artistic or journalistic work, but it’s hard not to imagine the photographer who took these shots smiling inside at least a bit.
How people react to the photo will depend on their political leanings, but this is undoubtedly one image for the history books in terms of U.S. politics alone.
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