Judges Must Take Action After Donald Trump’s Latest Attacks: Attorney


A former U.S. federal prosecutor has warned that witnesses and jurors in the criminal cases against Donald Trump could feel “intimidated” by the former president if they take to the stand or vote to convict him.

Joyce Vance, a frequent Trump critic, was responding to the former president’s social media post featuring an image of President Joe Biden tied up as an apparent kidnapping victim.

The 20-second video he shared on Truth Social showed a truck driving on a road with a picture on it of Biden lying on the floor with a gag in his mouth, leading to outrage that it was intended as an incitement to threaten Biden.

Vance, who was United States attorney for the Northern District of Alabama between 2009 and 2017, wrote on Substack that the controversy over the video comes as Trump is out on bond ahead of trial in four separate criminal cases.

“Judges have the ability to compel good behavior from defendants on bond pending trial in their court,” Vance said, “they should tell him he can’t threaten the President of the United States.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump
Former U.S. President Donald Trump after the wake of slain NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller at the Massapequa Funeral Home on March 28, 2024, New York. He has been condemned for a social media video showing…

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

She compared Trump’s post with other attacks by the former president such as his criticism of New York State Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan and his daughter as well as the law clerk of Judge Arthur Engoron, Allison Greenfield, who were involved in the lawsuit alleging that Trump committed business fraud.

Merchan is overseeing the criminal trial centered on hush money payments made to block allegations against Trump in 2016 and issued a limited order barring him from making statements about prosecutors, district attorney staff members, and potential witnesses and jurors in the case.

“Imagine the impact all of this is having on potential witnesses and jurors in the criminal cases against Trump,” Vance wrote.

“If Trump can get away with threatening a judge’s daughter, if he can do this to the President of the United States, then what’s going to happen to them if they take the witness stand against him or vote to convict?”

She said judges are obligated to protect the integrity of the proceedings in their courtrooms and that if, “Trump can slash and burn his way through the system, there is an enormous risk that jurors and witnesses will feel intimidated, and may turn away from their duty out of fears about their own and their loved ones’ safety.”

“It’s time for the courts to stop bending over backward to protect Trump. He’s entitled to all the constitutional protections any other criminal defendant receives, but he’s not entitled to more.”

Regardless of his being the Republican Party’s presidential candidate, she added “it’s time for the people with authority to do so to deal with him.”

Newsweek has contacted the Trump campaign for comment. As previously reported, Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung told Newsweek that the image of Biden that sparked outrage was on a vehicle that was “traveling down the highway.”

“Democrats and crazed lunatics have not only called for despicable violence against President Trump and his family, they are actually weaponizing the justice system against him,” Cheung added.