For the first time in American history, a jury has reached a verdict regarding criminal charges against a former United States president.

After more than 10 hours of deliberation, Judge Juan Merchan invited the jurors into the courtroom Thursday afternoon to read the verdict.

The jury of 12 New Yorkers, who vowed to be fair and impartial, found Donald Trump guilty on all criminal counts against him. Trump is now the first president in American history to be convicted of a felony.

Merchan announced a sentencing hearing for July 11 and said that Trump would continue to be released on his own recognizance.

“Trump, who had remained staring straight ahead as the guilty verdict was read on each count, looked over toward the jury box as each member of the panel confirmed their verdict,” according to CNN.

The criminal case, brought on by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Braggs, accused Trump of 34 criminal counts, including falsifying business records. The records were payments labeled as “legal expenses” allegedly used to pay off adult film actress Stormy Daniels from sharing a sexual encounter she claims to have had with Trump at a celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe in 2006.

Utah Sen. Mike Lee posted on X shortly after the historical verdict was reached, “A sad day for America. The verdict against Donald Trump, marred by unclear charges and irregular jury instructions, sets a dangerous precedent. This was a political prosecution to help Joe Biden, a weaponization of our justice system that threatens the very fabric of our Republic.”

Following Thursday afternoon’s announcement that a verdict was reached, reporters in the room said Trump’s emotions quickly changed. “Trump was looking cheerful and relaxed, sharing smiles and laughs with his lawyers, as they prepared to leave for the day, per The Washington Post. “As soon as the judge announced that instead we had a verdict, his demeanor changes dramatically.”

“This was a rigged, disgraceful trial,” Trump said as he left the courtroom.

As Trump waited like everyone else for the juror’s decision, he posted to his Truth Social accounts his often vocalized opinions on the criminal case against him:


Outside the courtroom, Trump spoke to the public, “We’ll keep fighting, we’ll fight till the end and we’ll win because our country’s gone to hell,” he said, per CNN. “We don’t have the same country anymore, we have a divided mess.”

“We will fight for our Constitution. This is long from over.”

Recap of Day 1 of jury deliberation

Wednesday was the first day the fate of Trump’s criminal lawsuit was in the hands of 12 New Yorkers. Following 55 pages of critical instructions on jury deliberation given to them by Merchan, the jurors left to discuss.

At the end of their jury deliberation Wednesday, the jury requested that Merchan revisit the instructions he gave to them as well as a replay of four different witness testimonies, according to CNN:

  • Media executive David Pecker’s testimony regarding his phone conversation with Trump in June 2016.
  • Pecker’s testimony about not completing Trump’s payment to American Media for Karen McDougal’s story.
  • Pecker’s testimony concerning the August 2015 Trump Tower meeting.
  • Attorney Michael Cohen’s testimony about the Trump Tower meeting.

The “hush money” payment totaled $130,000. Prosecutors claim Cohen made the payment and was reimbursed by Trump throughout his first year in office.

“The records were not ‘falsified’ because they cited legal services and Cohen was Trump’s lawyer at the time, Trump’s lead Attorney Todd Blanche said in court Tuesday in his closing arguments, per the New York Post. “The ‘scheme’ was to book a legal expense as a legal expense,” he added. “That’s absurd.”

After the court heard from 22 witnesses in a span of 16 days of testimonies, if a conviction is reached, it would indicate that after studying all the evidence, the 12 jurors will have agreed beyond a reasonable doubt that Trump had broken the law to dominate the 2016 presidential election.

The jurors do not need to agree unanimously on which specific criminal counts they believe Trump used “unlawful means” to commit. However, Merchan shared the following examples with the jurors:

  • Violations of the Federal Elections Campaign Act.
  • Counterfeiting of other business records.
  • Breach of tax laws.

“This case, at its core, is about a conspiracy and a coverup, a conspiracy to corrupt the 2016 election and a coverup to hide that conspiracy,” prosecutor Josh Steinglass said in his closing arguments, according to ABC News.

However, Trump has pleaded not guilty on all criminal counts and has denied ever having relations with Daniels.