Powder, Threat Sent to Manhattan DA 03/25 09:40
NEW YORK (AP) -- A powdery substance was found Friday with a threatening
letter in a mailroom at the offices of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg,
the latest security scare as the prosecutor weighs a potential historic
indictment of former President Donald Trump, authorities said.
New York City police and environmental protection officials isolated and
removed the suspicious letter, and testing "determined there was no dangerous
substance," Bragg spokesperson Danielle Filson said. The substance was sent to
a city lab for further examination, police said.
"Alvin, I am going to kill you," the letter said, according to a person
familiar with the matter. The person was not authorized to speak publicly about
an ongoing investigation and did so on condition of anonymity.
The discovery, in the same building where a grand jury is expected to resume
work Monday, came amid increasingly hostile rhetoric from Trump, a Republican
who is holding the first rally of his 2024 presidential campaign Saturday in
Hours earlier, Trump posted on his Truth Social platform that any criminal
charge against him could lead to "potential death & destruction."
Trump also posted a photo of himself holding a baseball bat next to a
picture of Bragg, a Democrat. On Thursday, Trump referred to Bragg, Manhattan's
first Black district attorney, as an "animal."
The building where the letter was found wasn't evacuated and business mostly
went on as usual, with prosecutors coming and going and bicycle delivery
workers dropping off lunch orders. The building houses various government
offices, including the city's marriage bureau.
Security has been heavy around the court buildings and district attorney's
office in recent days as the grand jury investigates hush money paid on Trump's
behalf during his 2016 campaign.
Additional police officers are on patrol, metal barricades have been
installed along the sidewalks and bomb sniffing dogs have been making regular
sweeps of the buildings, which have also faced unfounded bomb threats in recent
A New York State court spokesman said, "Due to the nature of increased
interest in proceedings in New York City Courthouses, we have increased
security, both inside and on the perimeter, and officers have been reminded to
remain vigilant and maintain situational awareness."
In a memo to staff Friday, Bragg said the office has also been receiving
offensive and threatening phone calls and emails. He thanked his staff of
nearly 1,600 people for persevering in the face of "additional press attention
and security around our office" and said their safety remains the top priority.
"We will continue to apply the law evenly and fairly, which is what each of
you does every single day," Bragg wrote.
Fabien Levy, a spokesperson for New York Mayor Eric Adams, released a
statement Friday night saying: "While we cannot comment on the specifics of any
ongoing investigation, no public official should ever be subject to threats for
doing his or her job. I'm confident that every elected official in the City,
including Manhattan DA Bragg, will continue to do their work undeterred, and
anyone found to be engaging in illegal conduct will be brought to justice."
The Rev. Al Sharpton said he will hold a prayer vigil for Bragg's safety
Saturday in Harlem. He and other Black leaders have condemned Trump's rhetoric
about Bragg and billionaire George Soros, who backed a group that supported
Bragg's campaign, as "not a dog-whistle but a bullhorn of incendiary and
The grand jury, convened by Bragg in January, has been investigating Trump's
involvement in a $130,000 payment made in 2016 to porn actor Stormy Daniels to
keep her from going public about a sexual encounter she said she had with Trump
years earlier. Trump has denied the claim.