Timeline: Manhattan DA's Stormy Daniels hush money case against Donald Trump

Trump is facing 34 counts of falsifying business documents in New York.

May 23, 2024, 4:42 PM

Former President Donald Trump is facing 34 felony counts of falsifying business records after being indicted last year by a Manhattan grand jury.

Prosecutors allege that Trump engaged in a "scheme" to boost his chances during the 2016 presidential election through a series of hush money payments made by others and the falsification of New York business records to cover up that alleged criminal conduct.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump leaves the courtroom at the Manhattan Criminal Court in New York on Apr. 4, 2023
Former President Donald Trump leaves the courtroom at the Manhattan Criminal Court in New York on Apr. 4, 2023.
Ed Jones/AFP via Getty Images

Trump, who has denied all wrongdoing, pleaded not guilty to all 34 counts.

Here is a timeline of the case, dating back to Trump's initial declaration as a candidate for president:

June 16, 2015

Trump announces he is running for president.

August 2015

Trump meets with David Pecker, then-chairman and CEO of American Media Inc. -- which owns the National Enquirer -- at Trump Tower in New York. Pecker agrees to help with Trump's campaign by looking out for negative stories about him to "catch and kill," according to prosecutors' statement of facts. He also agrees to publish negative stories about Trump's competitors in the election, according to the statement of facts filed by the Manhattan DA.

October/November 2015

Pecker learns that a former Trump Tower doorman was trying to sell information that Trump allegedly fathered a child out of wedlock, according to the statement of facts. At the CEO's direction, AMI negotiates and signs an agreement to pay the doorman $30,000 in exchange for acquiring exclusive rights to the story. AMI allegedly falsely characterized this payment in its general ledger, according to the statement of facts.

AMI purchases the story without fully investigating the doorman's claims, at the direction of Pecker, per his alleged arrangement with Trump, according to the statement of facts. AMI later determines the story was not true and wanted to release the doorman from the agreement, but Lawyer A -- a Trump Organization lawyer believed to be Michael Cohen -- allegedly instructs him not to do so until after the presidential election, according to the statement of facts.

June 2016

The National Enquirer's editor-in-chief and chief content officer contacted Cohen (Lawyer A) about a woman -- who is believed to be Playboy model Karen McDougal -- who alleged she had had a sexual relationship with Trump while he was married, according to the statement of facts. Cohen (Lawyer A) is updated by the National Enquirer about this regularly over text and by phone, according to the statement of facts. Trump allegedly did not want this information to become public because he was concerned what impact it may have on his campaign for president, according to the statement of facts.

AMI ultimately pays the woman $150,000 in exchange for her not speaking out on the alleged sexual relationship. She would also get two magazine cover features and a series of articles published under her byline, according to the statement of facts.

Prosecutors allege that this deal was made based on the understanding that Trump or the Trump Organization would reimburse AMI for the payment, according to the statement of facts.

Trump has denied having the affair.

September 2016

An audio recording allegedly captures a conversation between Trump and Cohen (Lawyer A) as they discuss how to obtain the rights to the woman's story from AMI and reimburse it for the payment, according to the statement of facts.

Cohen (Lawyer A) allegedly tells Trump he will open a company for the transfer of the woman's account and said he had spoken to Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg about setting it up, according to the statement of facts.

A shell company -- called Resolution Consultants, LLC -- is allegedly set up on about Sept. 30, 2016. On or about that date, Pecker signs an agreement transferring the rights of the woman's account to the shell company owned by Cohen (Lawyer A) for $125,000, according to court documents. But, before the reimbursement was made, Pecker consulted AMI's general counsel and then told Cohen (Lawyer A) that the deal was off.

Oct. 7, 2016

News breaks that Trump was caught on tape in 2015 telling the host of the entertainment show "Access Hollywood," "I just start kissing them [women]. It's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't even wait. And when you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. ... Grab 'em by the [genitals]. You can do anything."

According to prosecutors, evidence shows that both Trump and his campaign staff were concerned the tape would harm his viability as a candidate and reduce his standing with female voters in particular.

In a statement Trump released after the recording was leaked, he apologized and called his remarks "locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago."

Oct. 10, 2016

AMI's editor-in-chief contacts Pecker about a second woman -- believed to be adult film actress Stormy Daniels -- who alleged she had a sexual encounter with Trump while he was married, according to the statement of facts. Pecker tells the editor-in-chief to notify Cohen (Lawyer A).

The AMI editor-in-chief connects Cohen (Lawyer A) with the woman's lawyer. The two then negotiate a deal to secure the woman's silence. The woman would be paid $130,000 for the rights to her story, according to the statement of facts.

Trump allegedly tells Cohen (Lawyer A) to delay making a payment to the second woman for as long as possible, according to prosecutors. If he is able to delay making the payment until after the election, they could avoid paying altogether, Trump allegedly says, per prosecutors. Prosectors claim emails and text messages between both lawyers and the AMI editor-in-chief show they attempted to delay making the payment for as long as possible, according to the statement of facts.

Ultimately, Trump agrees to the payoff and directs Cohen (Lawyer A) to proceed, prosecutors allege. Trump allegedly does not want to make the payment himself and asked Cohen (Lawyer A) and Weisselberg to find a way to make the payment, according to the statement of facts. Cohen (Lawyer A) makes the payment after confirming that Trump would pay him back.

Oct. 26, 2016

Shortly after speaking with Trump over the phone, Cohen (Lawyer A) opens a bank account in Manhattan in the name of a shell company he had created to effectuate the payment, according to the statement of facts.

Cohen (Lawyer A) then transfers $131,000 from his personal home equity line of credit into the account, according to court documents.

Oct. 27, 2016

Cohen (Lawyer A) transfers $130,000 to a lawyer representing the second woman accusing Trump of having a sexual encounter with her while he was married to suppress her story, according to court documents.

Nov. 8, 2016

Trump wins the presidential election.

AMI then releases the doorman and the first accuser of their nondisclosure agreements, according to court documents.

By Jan. 20, 2017

Prosecutors allege that between Election Day and Inauguration Day, Trump meets privately with Pecker in Trump Tower in Manhattan, thanking him for handling the stories of the doorman and the first woman, according to the statement of facts.

Trump invites Pecker to the inauguration, according to the statement of facts.

January 2017

Trump arranges to reimburse Cohen (Lawyer A) for the payoff he made on his behalf shortly after being elected president, according to the statement of facts.

Cohen (Lawyer A) meets with Weisselberg to discus how he would be reimbursed, with Weisselberg asking Cohen to bring a copy of a bank statement for the shell company account showing the $130,000 payment, according to the statement of facts.

Weisselberg and Cohen (Lawyer A) agree to a total repayment amount of $420,000. That figure reflected double the $130,000 payment and $50,000 reimbursement for another expense in addition to a $60,000 year-end bonus -- so Cohen (Lawyer A) could characterize the payment as income on his tax returns instead of a reimbursement -- according to the statement of facts.

Trump, Weisselberg and Cohen (Lawyer A) agree the lawyer would be paid the $420,000 through 12 monthly payments of $35,000 over the course of 2017, according to court documents. Cohen (Lawyer A) was to send an invoice to the Trump Org each month falsely requesting a payment of $35,000 for legal services rendered. Cohen (Lawyer A) does not have a retainer agreement with Trump or the Trump Organization, according to prosecutors.

February 2017

Cohen (Lawyer A) meets with Trump in the Oval Office to confirm the repayment arrangement in February 2017, according to the statement of facts.

Feb. 14, 2017

Cohen (Lawyer A) emails the Trump Organization the first monthly invoice requesting two $35,000 payments for January and February, which were allegedly approved by Weisselberg, according to the statement of facts.

Throughout 2017

Cohen (Lawyer A) submits 10 similar invoices for the remaining months in 2017, but is not on retainer, according to prosecutors. Prosecutors allege the Trump Organization falsely recorded each payment as a "legal expense," according to the statement of facts.

According to prosecutors, the first check was paid from Trump's trust and signed by Weisselberg and Trump's son, as trustees. It was falsely recorded as payments for January and February 2017 legal services, according to the statement of facts.

A second check, for March 2017, was also paid from the trust and signed by two trustees, according to the statement of facts.

The remaining nine checks, for April through December 2017, were paid by Trump personally, according to the statement of facts. Trump allegedly signed each of the checks personally and had them sent to the Trump Organization in New York. They were then scanned and maintained in its data system before being detached and mailed to Cohen (Lawyer A), according to the statement of facts.

The last $35,000 payment made was for December 2017, according to the statement of facts.

Summer 2017

Trump invites Pecker to the White House for dinner to thank him for his help during the campaign, according to the statement of facts.

April 9, 2018

The FBI executes a search warrant on Cohen's residences and office, according to a statement of facts. Prosecutors allege that in the months that followed, Trump and others engaged in a public and private pressure campaign to try to ensure that Cohen did not cooperate with law enforcement in the federal investigation.

Cohen (Lawyer A) speaks with Trump on the day of the FBI searches, according to prosecutors. Trump allegedly told him to "stay strong," according to the statement of facts.

April 21, 2018

Trump publicly encourages Cohen not to "flip" in a series of tweets saying, "Most people will flip if the Government lets them out of trouble, even if it means lying or making up stories. Sorry, I don't see Michael doing that."

Mid-April 2018

Cohen (Lawyer A) is approached by an attorney -- Lawyer C -- who offers to represent him in the interest of maintaining a "back channel of communication" to Trump, according to the statement of facts.

On April 21, 2018, Lawyer C allegedly emails Cohen (Lawyer A) stating that he has a close relationship with Trump's personal attorney, named as Lawyer D, according to the statement of facts.

June 14, 2018

Lawyer C emails Cohen (Lawyer A) a news clip discussing the possibility of him cooperating with law enforcement, encouraging him not to, according to the statement of facts.

"The whole objective of this exercise by the [federal prosecutors] is to drain you, emotionally and financially, until you reach a point that you see them as your only means to salvation," Lawyer C wrote in the email, according to the statement of facts.

In the same email, Lawyer C wrote, "You are making a very big mistake if you believe the stories these 'journalists' are writing about you. They want you to cave. They want you to fail. They do not want you to persevere and succeed," according to the statement of facts.

July 2, 2018

In an in-depth interview that airs on "Good Morning America," his first since the FBI raided his office and homes in April, Cohen strongly signals his willingness to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller and federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York -- even if that puts Trump in jeopardy.

"My wife, my daughter and my son have my first loyalty and always will," Cohen tells ABC News' George Stephanopoulos. "I put family and country first."

Aug. 21, 2018

Cohen pleads guilty in the federal investigation admitting to his role in AMI's payoff to McDougal (Woman 1) to influence the election, according to the indictment, and saying in his plea that he had done so at Trump's direction.

Cohen also pleads guilty in connection with his payoff of Daniels to secure her silence, claiming it was done at Trump's direction, according to the statement of facts.

Trump comments on Twitter saying, "If anyone is looking for a good lawyer, I would strongly suggest that you don't retain the services of Michael Cohen!"

September 2018

Cohen and AMI admit guilt in connection with the payoffs made to the two women claiming Trump had extramarital relations with them, according to the statement of facts.

AMI entered into a non-prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York in connection to the payoff made to Woman 1, admitting it did not intend to publish a story at any time during the negotiation or acquisition of her story, the practice known as "catch and kill," according to the statement of facts.

Nov. 3, 2020

After a bitter campaign for reelection, Trump goes head to head with Joe Biden on Election Day. Four days later, it's clear Trump has lost after ABC News projects Pennsylvania for Biden.

March 2021

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance announces he will not seek reelection after 12 years in office, with the investigation into Trump still ongoing. His office had begun to look into hush money payments made to Stormy Daniels in 2018.

Nov. 2, 2021

Alvin Bragg is elected district attorney in Manhattan. Once in office, he picks up the investigation into Trump.

Bragg had led the investigation into the Trump Foundation in 2017 under then-Attorney General Eric Schneiderman for "extensive unlawful political conduct" with the charity's money and using it for personal matters. The foundation was dissolved and Trump was forced to pay $2 million as part of a settlement in 2019.

Nov. 4, 2021

Vance convenes a new grand jury for six months to hear evidence against Trump, paving the way for it to last until after he leaves office in January.

The grand jury that was already convened was set to expire. It had voted to bring charges against the Trump Organization and its CFO, Weisselberg, on unrelated matters.

Jan. 1, 2022

Bragg takes office as Manhattan's new district attorney. Before leaving office, Vance does not bring charges against Trump.

Feb. 22, 2022

The two prosecutors leading the Trump probe -- Assistant District Attorneys Carey Dunne and Mark Pomerantz -- resign from the district attorney's office.

Pomerantz later reveals that he disagreed with Bragg's decision to not bring charges against Trump in Bragg's early days as DA. Pomerantz was formerly a special prosecutor with the Southern District of New York.

The investigation continues after their resignations but doubt is cast on whether charges will be brought against Trump.

Aug. 18, 2022

Weisselberg pleads guilty to tax evasion, admitting he avoided taxes on nearly $2 million in income in a yearslong scheme. He agrees to a plea bargain for five months in prison and to testify against the Trump Organization at the upcoming trial in October. But, the plea agreement does not require him to testify against Trump himself.

Dec. 5, 2022

Bragg announces he has hired Matthew Colangelo as senior counsel. He was a previous Department of Justice official and prior to that worked at the New York Attorney General's Office where he was part of the team that investigated the Trump Foundation.

Dec. 6, 2022

A jury finds the Trump Organization guilty on all counts of tax fraud brought by the Manhattan district attorney's office.

Charges included scheme to defraud, conspiracy, criminal tax fraud and falsifying business records.

Beginning of 2023

A grand jury has been hearing testimony about the hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels, sources tell ABC News, including testimony from Pecker, the longtime Trump confidant. The DA's office also has the cooperation of Cohen.

Jan. 18, 2023

In a letter to book publisher Simon & Schuster, Bragg says he is concerned an upcoming book about Trump written by Pomerantz could harm the district attorney's office's investigation. Bragg asks the publisher to delay its release by asking for 60 days to review its manuscript.

Pomerantz's publisher says the book will be published in February as planned.

Jan. 30, 2023

Pecker becomes one of the first people to testify in front of the reconvened grand jury as it investigates hush money payments to Daniels.

Feb. 7, 2023

Simon & Schuster releases Pomerantz's book, "People vs. Donald Trump: An Inside Account," in which he criticizes Bragg, saying Bragg made a mistake by not bringing a case against Trump at the beginning of his tenure. Pomerantz had been assigned to the case by Vance.

Bragg responds to the criticism, saying the case against Trump wasn't ready.

Feb. 8, 2023

Cohen meets with prosecutors investigating Trump in what is his 15th time meeting with the district attorney's office, but his first since the grand jury was convened.

March 13, 2023

Cohen again testifies before the grand jury investigating the hush money payments.

March 20, 2023

Bob Costello, an attorney who says he previously advised Cohen, tells reporters his former client has a "lie, cheat, steal" mindset after Costello testifies for the defense before the Manhattan grand jury investigating Trump's role in the hush payment to Daniels.

Costello, a longtime Trump ally, appears before the grand jury as an exculpatory witness after Trump's legal team asked the DA to allow him to testify, according to a letter to prosecutors obtained by ABC News.

"I'm trying to tell the truth to the grand jury," Costello tells reporters after testifying. "If they want to go after Donald Trump and they have solid evidence, then so be it. Michael Cohen is not solid evidence."

March 27, 2023

Pecker speaks to the grand jury again for about an hour, according to sources familiar with the matter. The district attorney's office may have called Pecker to bolster Cohen's earlier testimony about the purpose of the payment.

March 30, 2023

The Manhattan grand jury hands down an indictment against Trump, making him the first former or current president to be indicted. The indictment remains under seal so it's not immediately clear what Trump will be charged with, but he negotiates his surrender, saying he will travel to New York the following week.

April 3, 2023

Trump travels to New York City from his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida home, one day ahead of surrendering to the court. He spends the night at his apartment in Trump Tower.

April 4, 2023

Trump travels to the Manhattan courthouse from midtown Manhattan to be processed by authorities before heading to court for his arraignment and the unsealing of the indictment.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump appears in court with his legal team for an arraignment on charges stemming from his indictment by a Manhattan grand jury, in New York City, April 4, 2023.
Former President Donald Trump appears in court with his legal team for an arraignment on charges stemming from his indictment by a Manhattan grand jury following a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels, in New York City, April 4, 2023.
Andrew Kelly/Pool via Reuters

The former president pleads not guilty to 34 felony charges of falsifying business records stemming from his hush payment to Daniels. Prosecutors allege that he engaged in a "scheme" to boost his election chances during the 2016 presidential race through a series of hush money payments made by others to help his campaign, and then "repeatedly and fraudulently falsified New York business records" to conceal that criminal conduct.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump arrives to speak during a press conference following his court appearance over an alleged 'hush-money' payment, at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., on April 4, 2023.
Former President Donald Trump arrives to speak during a press conference following his court appearance over an alleged 'hush-money' payment, at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., on April 4, 2023.
Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

Trump immediately returns to Mar-a-Lago where he gives a speech to supporters the same night criticizing Bragg for bringing charges and adding, "We are a nation in decline, and now these radical left lunatics want to interfere in elections by using law enforcement. We can't let that happen."

April 12, 2023

A threatening letter containing white powder is sent to Bragg, the second since Trump started posting on social media about his impending indictment. There are no reports of injuries or illness.

Bragg himself has received "multiple" death threats since Trump's indictment, police sources tell ABC News.

April 17, 2023

Prosecutors say the judge overseeing the criminal case against Trump should ask one of his attorneys for additional information about a potential conflict of interest.

Trump’s defense team includes Joe Tacopina, an attorney Daniels once considered hiring to represent her, and the Manhattan district attorney’s office says Tacopina’s representations so far are insufficient. Trump affirmed at his arraignment he wanted to move forward with Tacopina on his legal team, but Susan Hoffinger, the executive assistant district attorney, said a full hearing would be needed.

The potential conflict was raised by Daniels’ current attorney, Clark Brewster, who said in a letter to the Manhattan district attorney’s office Daniels had a 2018 conversation with Tacopina and lawyers at his firm.

Tacopina has said he never spoke to Daniels and he told the judge his firm refused to represent her.

May 8, 2023

Judge Juan Merchan, the New York City judge overseeing Trump's criminal case, imposes a protective order against Trump that is meant to ensure evidence shared by the DA's office doesn't wind up on the internet.

Prosecutors had sought the protective order because of what they called Trump's "extensive history" of making inflammatory remarks about witnesses, prosecutors and others associated with legal matters pending against him, assistant district attorney Catherine McCaw said when seeking the order.

May 24, 2023

Judge Merchan sets a trial date of March 25, 2024, for Trump's criminal trial on charges of falsifying business records. He had previously indicated that no one associated with the case is allowed to schedule anything that would conflict with the trial.

The judge also reviews for Trump the terms of the protective order that prohibits him from sharing on social media any evidence turned over by the Manhattan district attorney during discovery.

June 2, 2023

Attorneys for Trump ask Judge Merchan to step aside, citing the judge's daughter's ties to a Democratic organization.

The defense says the judge can't be impartial because his daughter is an executive at Authentic Campaigns, a Democratic consulting firm that worked on President Joe Biden's 2020 campaign.

Merchan himself will decide whether he is impartial.

June 16, 2023

Trump tries in a new court filing to get his criminal prosecution in New York moved to federal court, arguing the alleged crimes "took place while the president was in office."

Trump's attorneys accuse the Manhattan district attorney's office of "deceptively mischaracterizing and ignoring the applicable facts and body of law" by seeking to keep the case in state court.

June 27, 2023

A federal judge seems disinclined allow Trump to move his criminal prosecution in New York into federal court.

"The act for which the president has been indicted does not relate to anything under the color of his office," says Judge Alvin Hellerstein, adding that he intends to issue a decision in the coming weeks.

July 19, 2023

Federal judge Alvin Hellerstein rejects Trump's request to move his hush-money criminal case into federal court.

"Trump has failed to show that the conduct charged by the Indictment is for or relating to any act performed by or for the President under color of the official acts of a President," Hellerstein writes in his ruling.

August 28, 2023

The judge overseeing Trump's federal election interference case orders the trial in that case to begin on March 4, 2024, after speaking with Bragg to advise him of the likely overlap between the two cases, both of which are slated to start that month.

Sept. 12, 2023

Judge Merchan signals he is open to moving the date of the trial, currently scheduled for March 4, due to "the many recent developments involving Mr. Trump."

Sept. 18, 2023

Judge Merchan rules that attorney Joe Tacopina has no conflict representing Trump in the case despite prior dealings with Stormy Daniels. Tacopina had been contacted about representing Daniels prior to her choosing since-disgraced attorney Michael Avenatti.

Oct. 5, 2023

Trump asks a New York judge to dismiss all charges in his hush money case.

"President Trump cannot be said to have falsified business records of the Trump Organization by paying his personal attorney using his personal bank accounts," defense attorney Todd Blanche says in the motion, which calls the case a "discombobulated package of politically motivated charges."

Nov. 14, 2023

Trump drops his effort to move his criminal hush money prosecution from Manhattan court into federal court.

Nov. 16, 2023

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, in a court filing, opposes Trump's attempt to dismiss his criminal indictment, saying the former president is seeking "special treatment" that he does not deserve.

Jan. 15, 2024

Stormy Daniels is "set to testify" in Trump's Manhattan hush money trial set for March 25, the adult film actress says on the most recent episode of her podcast.

Feb. 15, 2024

In the case's final hearing before the trial gets underway, Judge Juan Merchan -- with Trump in attendance -- denies Trump's motion to dismiss the case and shoots down arguments from the defense that the trial should be delayed because it will interfere with Trump's campaigning for president.

Feb. 26, 2024

DA Alvin Bragg asks a judge to impose a limited gag order barring Trump from making public statements about witnesses, jurors, court staff and prosecutors other than Bragg involved in the case, citing what he calls Trump's "longstanding and perhaps singular history" of attacking people he considers to be adversaries.

Feb. 29, 2024

Prosecutors plan to use Trump's own words -- including quotes from books like "Trump: The Art of the Deal" -- against him in his hush money trial, according to court filings.

March 4, 2024

Trump's defense lawyers ask Judge Juan Merchan to deny prosecutors' request for a limited gag order, arguing the former president should be permitted to fully respond to attacks by his political opponents.

March 5, 2024

The public release of the infamous 2005 "Access Hollywood" tape before the 2016 presidential election "served as the catalyst" for Trump's hush payment to Stormy Daniels and should be admissible at his upcoming trial, prosecutors argue in a court filing.

March 6, 2024

Trump's attorneys, in a filing, accuse Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg of pursuing a "deluded fantasy" case against the former president by tying a hush payment to an attempt to influence the 2016 presidential election.

March 7, 2024

Judge Merchan agrees with the DA's request to limit the disclosure of the names and other identifying information of jurors in the upcoming trial, finding "there is a likelihood of bribery, jury tampering, or of physical injury or harassment of juror(s)."

March 11, 2024

Attorneys for Trump ask Judge Merchan to delay the start of the trial while the U.S. Supreme Court weighs Trump's presidential immunity argument -- but the judge pushes back, criticizing the timing of the request and ordering Trump's team to seek permission before making future motions.

March 12, 2024

Attorneys for Trump say in a court filing that they will not invoke a formal "advice of counsel" defense at the trial, but signal that Trump will argue he did not intend to break the law "because of his awareness that various lawyers were involved."

March 14, 2024

The Manhattan district attorney's office tells Judge Merchan that it would accept a 30-day delay to the start of the hush money trial, citing newly disclosed evidence from the U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan.

March 18, 2024

Judge Merchan denies Trump’s attempts to exclude evidence related to the Access Hollywood tape and testimony from key witnesses from his upcoming criminal trial, but rules that prosecutors will not be permitted to play the infamous tape to jurors.

March 21, 2024

Trump's request for a lengthy adjournment of his hush money trial based on recently disclosed potential evidence is "a red herring" and part of a "strategic delay," prosecutors argue in a court filing.

Stormy Daniels, meanwhile, tells ABC's "The View" that she is "absolutely ready" to testify at trial.

March 25, 2024

Judge Juan Merchan orders the trial to begin with jury selection on April 15. The decision rejects a bid by Trump's attorneys to further delay the case after the defense raised issues with the late production of over 100,000 pages of potential evidence by federal prosecutors.

March 26, 2024

Judge Merchan grants the Manhattan district attorney's request for a limited gag order on the former president that prevents Trump from making public statements about witnesses in the hush money case, prospective jurors, members of the court staff and their families other than the judge, and lawyers in the case other than Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg.

The partial gag order follows Trump's disparaging remarks about witness Michael Cohen, Judge Merchan, and Merchan's daughter, who works with a group involved in Democratic politics.

April 1, 2024

Judge Merchan expands his limited gag order on Trump to cover the family members of the judge and District Attorney Alvin Bragg, following a request by prosecutors after Trump continues to target Merchan's daughter on social media.

The development comes as sources tell ABC News that Trump's former spokesperson Hope Hicks is expected to testify for the prosecution at the upcoming trial.

April 2, 2024

Trump's lawyers again ask Judge Merchan to recuse himself from the trial, seven months after the judge declined a similar request by defense lawyers.

April 3, 2024

Judge Merchan rules that Trump is not immune from prosecution in the case on the grounds of presidential immunity, in part because Trump failed to invoke the defense in a timely fashion.

The ruling comes on the same day the Manhattan DA's office urges the judge to reject Trump's attempt to delay the upcoming trial due to the large amount of pretrial publicity.

April 5, 2024

Judge Merchan quashes a subpoena issued to NBCUniversal by defense lawyers that had sought materials related to their documentary about Stormy Daniels, calling the request the "very definition of a fishing expedition."

April 8, 2024

Judge Lizbeth Gonzalez of Appellate Division First Department denies Trump's attempt to delay the upcoming trial on the grounds that pretrial publicity has made it impossible to find a fair and impartial jury.

The development comes on the same day that Judge Merchan releases the questionnaire he plans to use to oversee jury selection for the trial. ABC News, meanwhile, reports that prosecutors at the upcoming trial are expected to call several witnesses who are or were part of Trump's inner circle.

April 9, 2024

Appellate Judge Cynthia Kern declines Trump's request to delay the upcoming trial while waiting for the full panel of the Appellate Division First Department to weigh, later this month, whether to relax Trump's limited gag order.

April 10, 2024

Appellate Judge Ellen Gesmer declines Trump's request to delay the upcoming trial while waiting for the full panel of the Appellate Division First Department to weigh, later this month, Trump's challenge to a ruling by Judge Merchan barring the defense from raising objections to evidence based on presidential immunity, as well as the judge's refusal to recuse himself from the case.

Trump's attorneys, in the meantime, have subpoenaed the wrong Jeremy Rosenberg, according to court filings.

April 12, 2024

Three days before the scheduled start of the trial, Judge Merchan denies Trump's request to adjourn the case due to overwhelming pretrial publicity.

April 15, 2024

The first criminal trial involving a former U.S. president gets underway in New York with the start of Donald Trump's hush money trial. The former president sits through roughly six hours of court proceedings as the process of seating a 12-person jury begins.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump appears with his legal team Todd Blanche, and Emil Bove ahead of the start of jury selection at Manhattan Criminal Court, Apr. 15, 2024, in New York City.
Former President Donald Trump appears with his legal team Todd Blanche, and Emil Bove ahead of the start of jury selection at Manhattan Criminal Court, Apr. 15, 2024, in New York City.
Jabin Botsford-Pool/Getty Images

April 16, 2024

On Day 2 of the trial, the first seven jurors are selected for the 12-person jury that will be supplemented with six alternates. Among the seven are an oncology nurse, an attorney, a teacher and an IT consultant.

April 17, 2024

The remaining five jurors -- five men and seven women --- are selected for the 12-person jury on Day 3 of the trial, after a temporary setback results in the dismissal of two jurors who were previously seated.

April 19, 2024

A full jury of 12 jurors and six alternates is seated in Day 4 of the trial. The alternate jurors are five women and one man.

April 22, 2024

Attorneys deliver opening statements in Day 5 of the trial, with prosecutors framing the case as "election fraud, pure and simple" and the defense seeking to distance Trump from any alleged wrongdoing.

April 23, 2024

Former National Enquirer publisher David Pecker, testifying on Day 6 of the trial, describes in detail the "catch-and-kill" arrangement he struck with Trump and his then-attorney Michael Cohen during the 2016 presidential campaign.

April 25, 2024

Former National Enquirer publisher David Pecker testifies about then-Trump attorney Michael Cohen's payment to Stormy Daniels before being cross-examined on Day 7 of the trial.

April 26, 2024

Jurors on Day 8 of the trial hear testimony from witnesses including Trump's longtime Trump Organization assistant, Ronna Graff, who says she has a "vague recollection" of spotting Stormy Daniels in Trump Tower.

April 29, 2024

ABC News reports that former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, as he waits to testify in the trial, has been discussing the trial proceedings and attacking Trump in a series of TikTok livestreams that some experts say could hurt Cohen in the courtroom.

April 30, 2024

Attorney Keith Davidson, who represented both Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, testifies on Day 9 of the trial how he brokered a pair of deals to keep their alleged affairs with Trump out of print.

May 2, 2024

Attorneys for Trump, on Day 10 of the trial, attempt to frame attorney Keith Davidson, who represented both Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, as an unsavory figure who made a career of extorting wealthy celebrities for shady clients.

May 3, 2024

Hope Hicks, one of Trump's closest former advisers, testifies on Day 11 of the trial about the "frantic" hours after his 2016 campaign learned about the existence and imminent release of the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape.

May 6, 2024

Two longtime employees of the Trump Organization testify on Day 12 of the trial about their role in executing a string of payments to then-Trump attorney Michael Cohen in 2017.

May 7, 2024

Face to face with Donald Trump for the first time in more than a decade, Stormy Daniels, taking the stand on Day 13 of the trial, gives a graphic description of the alleged 2006 sexual encounter with Trump that he sought to bury ahead of the 2016 presidential election for fear of it torpedoing his campaign.

Attorneys for Trump, who denies the encounter took place, subsequently move for a mistrial on the grounds that Daniels' explicit testimony was "extraordinarily prejudicial," but Judge Merchan denies the motion, saying the appropriate remedy is not a mistrial, but the defense's cross-examination.

May 8, 2024

Trump's defense team asks an intermediate appeals court to fast-track his appeal challenging the constitutionality of the limited gag order in his hush money case.

May 9, 2024

Under a heated cross-examination, Stormy Daniels spars with defense attorneys as she denies allegations that she made up her story of a 2006 sexual encounter with Trump in order to enrich herself, telling jurors on Day 14 of the trial that her interaction with Trump and subsequent notoriety had a "negative" impact on her life.

Jurors also hear testimony from former Trump White House aide Madeleine Westerhout, who testifies about how Trump, while president, signed Michael Cohen's reimbursement checks.

May 10, 2024

Former White House aide Madeline Westerhout, on Day 15 of the trial, testifies that Donald Trump "was very upset" with a 2018 Wall Street Journal story that reported on the hush-money payment to Daniels, saying that "my understanding is he knew it would be hurtful to his family."

May 13, 2024

Appearing calm and composed on the stand, star witness Michael Cohen, Trump's former attorney at the heart of the hush money case, testifies on Day 16 of the trial that Trump directed him to "just take care of" a payment to silence Stormy Daniels in the waning days of his 2016 presidential campaign, and that Trump approved the final $130,000 deal and signed off on the reimbursement plan.

Cohen testifies that the sole purpose of the scheme was to protect Trump's political fortunes and obscure his role in orchestrating the arrangements.

May 14, 2024

In a combative start to former Trump attorney Michael Cohen's cross-examination, Trump's defense team, on Day 17 of the trial, questions Cohen's motivation for testifying against Trump, highlighting Cohen's TikTok streams attacking the former president, in contrast to his past praise and admiration for Trump.

May 16, 2024

Trump's defense team undertakes an aggressive bid to undermine former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen's credibility, attempting to frame Cohen as a prolific liar with a bone to pick against his former boss on Day 18 of the trial.

May 20, 2024

After the defense concludes its cross-examination of former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, the prosecution rests its case on Day 19 of the trial. For the defense's second witness, Trump's attorneys call Cohen's one-time legal adviser Robert Costello, who earns sharp rebuke from Judge Merchan for allegedly violating his "courtroom decorum."

May 21, 2024

After Michael Cohen's one-time legal adviser Robert Costello completes his testimony, the defense rests on Day 20 of the trial -- without Trump taking the stand in his own defense. The parties then hash out the instructions that will be given to the jury followling summations.