What Happens to Donald Trump Now That He’s Been Convicted?

Trump New York Manhattan Criminal Court

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The phrase “convicted felon Donald Trump” has a gleeful ring to it for the many Americans rooting against the former president. Unfortunately for that crowd, experts say it was always extremely unlikely that he would leave the courthouse in handcuffs after his guilty verdict, and he’ll almost certainly remain free on bail in the time before sentencing.

The major question on Judge Juan Merchan’s plate now involves the sentence itself. Already, Merchan has approved a sentencing date of July 11, which was agreed to by both the prosecution and defense (and will be just days before the start of the Republican National Convention). Between then and now, Merchan will have to determine if a nonviolent offender with no criminal record, convicted of Class-E felonies — the lowest tier of felonies in New York State — deserves jail time or probation.

After that, the long and arduous appeal process will begin, and it seems unlikely to be resolved before the election in November.

The Washington Post notes several possible scenarios for Trump as he navigates the New York criminal justice system following his conviction, even if he only receives a sentence of probation:

[Trump may now face conditions] he may consider insulting, including a required inmate review by the New York City Department of Probation. The probation office on the 10th floor of the Manhattan Criminal Courthouse prepares presentencing reports for judges. There, Trump would be interviewed about his personal history, his mental health and the circumstances that led to his conviction. …

The Class E felony charges are punishable by 16 months to four years in prison. Among the key issues to be determined would be whether Trump faces some form of incarceration, either in a government facility or a private location, or a less-restrictive experience through probation.

If he is sentenced to probation, for example, Trump would be required to clear any out-of-state travel — such as to campaign rallies and fundraisers — with a probation officer. If Trump were to serve home confinement at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla., New York authorities would probably have to work with counterparts in Florida to accommodate him, the experts said.

It’s also worth noting that Trump’s felony conviction does not bar him from running from president. And he’ll most likely be able to vote in November, since while Florida bars felons convicted in Florida from voting, it respects out-of-state voting restrictions when a felon is convicted elsewhere. New York State bars felons from voting only if they are currently incarcerated, so unless Trump has received a prison sentence and is serving that sentence on Election Day, he’ll probably be able to vote in Florida.

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