Updated Aug 24, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Large crowds outside Atlanta jail for Trump's historic booking

Fulton County Sheriff Deputies stand guard outside the Fulton County Jail ahead of former President Trump's surrender. Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

A large crowd of Trump supporters, protestors, journalists and curious onlookers toughed the Georgia heat on Thursday while former President Trump was booked at the Fulton County Jail.

Driving the news: Trump arrived at the jail just after 7:30pm. He had his mug shot taken upon surrendering, a first for a U.S. president.

What's happening: Trump and his 18 co-defendants charged in the Georgia case had a deadline of noon on Friday to turn themselves in. Several have already done so.

State of play: By the early afternoon, a crowd of hundreds had assembled, Axios' Kristal Dixon reports from outside the jail.

  • The majority appeared to be in support of the former president, at times chanting his name. People brought with them signs, flags, tents, costumes and at least one vuvuzela.
  • Streets were blocked off, including the one leading to the front entrance of the jail. A nearby animal shelter preemptively shut down for the day, and residents of the surrounding neighborhood braced themselves for potential chaos.
  • A truck dropped off additional barricades mid-morning to keep people out of the roadway. Shortly after, Atlanta firefighters arrived to help secure the area.
Photo: Kristal Dixon/Axios

What they're saying: Georgia state Senator Colton Moore, who last week called for an emergency session to review the actions of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, showed up.

  • He told supporters there that his constituents work hard for their tax dollars and don't want their money being spent on some "rogue" district attorney.
  • Moore has no constituents in Fulton County. His deep Republican state senate district lies in Northwest Georgia — within prominent Trump ally Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene's Congressional district.

Zoom in: The jail where the 45th president and his co-defendants are to be booked is itself under DOJ investigation for civil rights violations. Several inmates have died there, including 66-year-old Alexander Hawkins, who died there just last week.

Meanwhile: If the former president's social media presence were to be any indication, his mind early Thursday was still on the 2024 presidential campaign.

  • Trump shared several posts on Truth Social about poll numbers, which continue to show him as the frontrunner for the GOP nomination, and Wednesday night's debate, of which he was not a participant.

In photos:

Photo: Kristal Dixon
Photo: Kristal Dixon
Photo: Thomas Wheatley

Editor's note: This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.

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