Updated Jun 8, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Man charged for attempted murder of Justice Kavanaugh

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during the State of the Union address in Washington, D.C., in March 2022.
Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during the State of the Union address in Washington, D.C., in March 2022. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

A man with a weapon arrested near Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's Maryland home early Wednesday morning has been charged with attempted murder, according to the Department of Justice.

The latest: The criminal complaint against the suspect, identified as Nicholas John Roske, 26, from Simi Valley, California, alleges that he told detectives he traveled to Maryland intending to kill Kavanaugh.

Why it matters: The complaint alleged that two United States Deputy Marshals saw a man dressed in black clothing and carrying a backpack and a suitcase, get out of a taxicab that had stopped in front of Kavanaugh's home at approximately 1:05 a.m.

  • The suspect saw the two marshals and then walked down the street. Several minutes later, the Montgomery County Emergency Communications Center received a call from Roske that he had a firearm, was having suicidal thoughts and traveled from California to kill Kavanaugh.
  • Roske was then arrested by Montgomery County Police Department officers while still on the line.
  • After searching the backpack, law enforcement officials found a black tactical vest and tactical knife, a pistol with two magazines and ammunition, pepper spray, zip ties, a hammer, screwdriver, nail punch, crow bar, pistol light, duct tape, hiking boots with padding on the outside of the soles.
  • Roske allegedly told detectives that he was upset about the leak of a recent Supreme Court draft decision that would overturn Roe v. Wade and the recent school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.

What they're saying: "At approximately 1:50 a.m. today, a man was arrested near Justice Kavanaugh's residence," Supreme Court spokesperson Patricia McCabe said Wednesday.

  • "The man was armed and made threats against Justice Kavanaugh. He was transported to Montgomery County Police 2nd District," she added.
  • "The President condemns the actions of this individual in the strong possible terms and is grateful to law enforcement for quickly taking him into custody," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday.
  • "This kind of behavior is obviously behavior that we will not tolerate," Attorney General Merrick Garland said Wednesday. "Threats of violence and actual violence against the justices of course strike at the heart of our democracy, and we will do everything we can to prevent them and to hold people who do them accountable."

The big picture: Congress has been considering legislation that would increase security for federal judges and their families after protests erupted outside the homes of Supreme Court justices over the leaked draft, Axios' Andrew Solender reports.

Read the affidavit:

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