Trump walks back Gitmo threats for NYC attacker — but doubles down on ‘DEATH PENALTY’
Donald Trump speaks to Fox News (screen grab)

President Donald Trump on Thursday backed off his threat to send New York terrorist Sayfullo Saipov to Guantanamo Bay, although he reiterated his support for giving the attacker the death penalty.

"Would love to send the NYC terrorist to Guantanamo but statistically that process takes much longer than going through the Federal system," the president wrote. "There is also something appropriate about keeping him in the home of the horrible crime he committed. Should move fast. DEATH PENALTY!"

Many legal experts have said that Trump's insistence that Saipov be given the "DEATH PENALTY" may hurt his ability to actually get the death penalty in this case. National security attorney Mark Zaid, for instance, said that Trump's tweet is "potentially tainting" the jury pool for Saipov's trial and "could impact alleged perpetrator's ability to secure [a] fair trial."

And former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti went so far as to say that Trump actually "helped the terrorist" with his tweets pushing for Saipov to receive the death penalty.