Who Is Jenny Hannigan? Manhattan Court Employee Arrested after Trying to Approach Trump During His NYC Civil Fraud Trial

According to a spokeswoman, Hannigan had been shouting to Trump that she wished to offer her assistance.

A New York state court employee was arrested on Wednesday after she rose from her seat during the civil fraud trial of former President Donald Trump during his ongoing civil fraud trial in Manhattan and walked toward the area where he was seated. The woman allegedly said that she wanted to help him.

However, the woman withdrew from her actions after a court officer instructed her to go back to her seat in bizarre scenes during the third week of the high-profile $250 million fraud trial involving Trump. The woman, who cops identified as Jenny Hannigan, was charged with contempt of court for disrupting the proceedings in Manhattan Supreme Court.

Unexpected Disruption

Jenny Hannigan
Jenny Hannigan X

Soon after the incident, Hannigan was escorted by cops out of the Manhattan courtroom and arrested. She was charged just before noon for disrupting the court proceedings "by standing up and walking toward the front of the courtroom yelling out to Mr. Trump," Office of Court Administration spokesman Lucian Chalfen said.

Hannigan, dressed in a black outfit comprising a dress and a matching blazer, was intercepted by court officers before she could approach Trump, 77, and his legal team, all of whom were seated at the defense table. This information was conveyed, Chalfen said in a statement.

Jenny Hannigan
Jenny Hannigan seen being stopped by cops after she tried to approach Donald Trump X

According to a spokeswoman, Hannigan had been shouting to Trump that she wished to offer her assistance.

However, reporters inside the courtroom did not report hearing her speak loudly. She was later heard shouting in the courthouse lobby as officers escorted her out of the building. "None of the parties were ever in any danger," the court spokeswoman said.

Hannigan is employed at a state courthouse in a different location from where the trial is being held. She has been put on administrative leave and is prohibited from accessing state court facilities while an investigation is conducted.

Jenny Hannigan
Jenny Hannigan X

Hannigan, 37, who lives in Baldwin, New York, serves as a secretary for a judge in Queens, as per a source from the courthouse.

No Harmful Intentions

When he left the court at around 3:30 p.m., the former president said that he was unaware of the woman's arrest or the apparent disturbance she had caused. "Who got arrested? We didn't know anything about it," he told reporters.

Donald Trump in the Manhattan court on Wednesday during his NYC civil fraud trial X

Hannigan was initially requested to sit in the courtroom's gallery, and subsequently, an officer asked to speak with her outside the room at around 11:45 a.m.

She then proceeded to the crowded hallway, where she began speaking loudly and expressed her fear. A group of officers surrounded her and requested that she lower her voice.

Following this, officers accompanied Hannigan downstairs to the first floor, and as she continued to yell "Help me!" and "Save me!" for several minutes, they handcuffed her, as reported by a source from the courthouse.

The trial continued, although there was another disruption, this time when Trump expressed frustration by raising his hands and grumbling to his lawyers while a witness was testifying against him.

Judge Arthur Engoron warned Trump and other participants in the case to lower their voices. This came after the 2024 Republican frontrunner engaged in animated discussions with his lawyers at the defense table. At that moment, real estate appraiser Doug Larson was providing his second day of testimony.

State attorney Kevin Wallace requested that Judge Engoron instruct the defense to refrain from commenting during the witness's testimony, noting that these comments were audible on the witness's side of the room.

In response, the judge asked everyone to maintain lower voices, especially if their intention was to "influence the testimony."

Jenny Hannigan
Jenny Hannigan seen being escorted out of the Manhattan court before she was arrested X

Later, Trump's legal team alleged that Larson had provided false information while testifying. As a result, Larson was asked to leave the room while the attorneys and the judge deliberated on this claim.

The perjury accusation revolved around the issue of whether Larson had collaborated with Jeff McConney, the controller of Trump Org and a co-defendant in the case, to assess the value of Trump's properties in 2013.

During the questioning of Larson, Trump's attorney, Lazaro Fields, accused him of testifying on Tuesday that he had not collaborated with McConney. Fields produced an email as evidence that showed Larson communicating with McConney around that same time, thereby challenging Larson's previous statement.

"You lied, Mr. Larson, didn't you?" Fields said, raising his voice.

"I did not. That's what I recall," Larson responded.

Following Fields' accusation, Trump's lawyer, Chris Kise, intervened by suggesting that Larson should be informed of his Fifth Amendment right, which protects individuals from self-incrimination. This statement prompted audible reactions, including groans, from the lawyers at the Attorney General's table.

Kise asserted during the hearing, "He perjured himself yesterday, in my opinion." Meanwhile, the Attorney General's office accused the former president's legal team of exaggerating their actions for the benefit of the assembled media.

"This is a performance for the press sitting behind us, and not a real legal issue," Wallace said after a court officer escorted Larson out of the room.

"This is witness intimidation!" AG counsel Colleen Kelly Faherty shouted.

As he left the court on Wednesday, Trump informed reporters that he "probably" wouldn't be returning for the trial the following day due to an upcoming golf tournament taking place at his golf club in Miami, Florida.

The Trump Golf Doral is set to host the LIV Golf Team Championship from October 20th to 22nd.