The first-ever mugshot of a US president has been released.
Donald J. Trump’s historic booking photo was unveiled Tuesday during his surrender at Atlanta’s Fulton County Jail.
Trump was charged earlier this month with 13 attempts to interfere in Georgia’s election process in the 2020 presidential race. It was the fourth indictment against Trump in recent months. All told, Trump faces 91 criminal charges that — if convicted on all charges — could lead to a prison sentence of about 700 years.
Trump managed to dodge a booking photo in his previous indictments. Some have argued that such a photo is unnecessary because the purpose of a mug shot is to help identify the person being arrested and Trump is one of the most famous figures in the world. Others have countered that Trump’s notoriety shouldn’t earn him special treatment and that his booking process should be the same as everyone else’s.
“Unless someone tells me otherwise, we follow our normal practices, so it doesn’t matter what your status is, we have a mugshot ready for you,” Fulton County Sheriff Pat Labat previously told local media.
It is speculated that such a mugshot will soon be weaponized by the Trump campaign to boost fundraising, as Trump has managed to distort his actions that would have shamed and condemned any other politician to unfair prosecution. T-shirts were previously sold for the campaign fake mugshot photosas reported last summer Trump quietly began to distract more of the money he raised for his 2024 presidential campaign to a PAC that he has used to pay his legal fees.
There is also speculation that Trump’s mugshot could become one of the most famous photos of all time — perhaps the most seen ever.
When asked about that possibility, Oxford photo historian Geoffrey Batchen recounted The Hollywood reporter: “To get an answer you would have to define ‘most seen’. If you’re talking about ‘relative to the world’s population’, maybe the moon landing photo could win the race? Trump is an American problem; people in other countries are not as obsessed with his weaknesses as Americans. I imagine Trump hopes it will be widely distributed because, as always, he wants to monetize it. I wouldn’t encourage him. If you ignored him, he would go away.
Given Trump’s four charges and his lead in the Republican Party primary, it doesn’t seem likely that the media — or the public — will ignore the nominee any time soon. His surrender comes one day after the first Republican primary debate, where eight other candidates struggled to break away from the pack. Experts have suggested that the debate was largely won by former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and technology billionaire Vivek Ramaswamythough it remains doubtful whether any of the rival candidates can close Trump’s significant electoral gap (No candidate has ever lost a primary with such a big lead on this point).
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has reportedly requested an Oct. 23 trial date.