FIRST IN THE DAILY SIGNAL: An internal email from the U.S. Marshals Service to staff members states that the agency was unaware of any “specific, targeted threat to a USMS-protected facility or person” one day before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
The Marshals Service email does not mention Nicholas Roske’s alleged assassination attempt on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh two weeks earlier, nor does it mention that the justices’ addresses had been posted online.
Roske has said that he was motivated to kill Kavanaugh by seeing the justice’s home address posted on the internet. The addresses are still readily available on the internet.
The Marshals Service did not respond to requests for comment for this article.
In the June 23, 2022, notice sent to the Marshals Service leadership and communications teams, the agency’s staff addressed the then-pending ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, according to emails obtained by The Heritage Foundation’s Oversight Project. (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)
The email states that following the May 3, 2022, leak of the draft opinion indicating that Roe v. Wade would soon be overturned, “there have been several acts of property damage, arson, vandalism, and threats/intimidation against Federal Court Houses, protected persons, as well as private businesses, houses of worship, and reproductive health care services facilities/providers.”
Activists had been consistently protesting “at both the U.S. Supreme Court and Justices’ residences,” the memo acknowledges, though it does not say that that was because far-left activist groups such as Ruth Sent Us had posted the justices’ home addresses online. Though Ruth Sent Us was supended from Twitter, the justices’ addresses remain posted on the platform.
The Marshals Service notice acknowledges that “multiple” instances of vandalism and arson at “pro-life associated entities nationwide” are linked to the terrorist group Jane’s Revenge, adding: “It is unknown if the individuals associated with these incidents are using Jane’s Revenge as a slogan or are operating as a coordinated group.”
There have been more than just “multiple” attacks on pro-life pregnancy centers, however: Since the May 2022 leak, there have been 88 attacks on pro-life pregnancy resource centers and 186 attacks on Catholic churches to date, according to Catholic Vote trackers.
Notably, the notice adds: “[The Judicial Security Division] is unaware of any specific, targeted threat to a USMS-protected facility or person; however, the likelihood of protests occurring as a response to the ruling is great.”
The claim comes as a surprise, given the ongoing protests outside the homes of the justices. Additionally, on June 8, 2022—the day authorities arrested Roske—Ruth Sent Us called for protests at Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s home and church in a post that discussed the family’s daily schedule.
The Supreme Court did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Daily Signal as to whether the justices had faced threats to their families during this time period. In March, the Supreme Court asked Congress to increase funding to help protect the justices.
The Marshals Service memo also did not mention how authorities arrested Roske near the Kavanaugh family home and charged him with attempted murder of a Supreme Court justice. Kavanaugh apparently was not Roske’s only target.
“Im gonna stop roe v wade from being overturned,” Roske told a friend, according to an FBI search warrant obtained by Fox News, saying he would “remove some people from the Supreme Court.”
That friend told Roske that “two dead judges ain’t gonna do nothing,” adding, “The whole government is f—–. There’s no fixing that. You would die before you killed them all.”
“Yeah,” Roske responded, “but I could get at least one, which would change the votes for decades to come, and I am shooting for 3. All of the major decisions for the past 10 years have been along party lines, so if there are more liberal than conservative judges, they will have the power.”
Meanwhile, groups of far-left activists—including individuals such as Sadie Kuhns, Melissa Barlow, Nikki Enfield, and Nadine Seiler—were protesting at the homes of the Supreme Court justices in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1507 in federal law.
Attorney General Merrick Garland acknowledged this spring that it’s a federal crime to protest outside a judge’s home with the intent of influencing that judge’s rulings. Garland has not enforced that law, though both Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin and then-Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan requested that he do so, and in March, Garland claimed that the U.S. marshals “on scene” make the decision “whether to make an arrest.”
The Marshals Service memo calls for “districts experiencing protest activity” to document all activity affecting “protected facility operations as a demonstration incident in Capture,” the Marshals Service database.
The email added: “If the demonstration has a significant impact on judicial operations, significant incident reporting protocols apply.”
Similarly, in an attached Judicial Security Division Information Bulletin dated June 2, 2022, also obtained by the Oversight Project, the Marshals’ JSD again emphasizes that it has “no specific information on current threats to any USMS-protected persons, protected facilities, or the judicial process.”
That bulletin came six days before the attempted Kavanaugh assassination.
The Daily Signal previously reported that Republicans accused the Justice Department of “actively” seeking to “dissuade” the U.S. Marshals Service from enforcing 18 U.S.C. § 1507 to protect the Supreme Court justices.
And in a May 3 letter to Garland, Republican Sens. Katie Britt of Alabama, Tom Cotton of Arkansas, Ted Cruz of Texas, and Mike Lee of Utah revealed that they had obtained “post orders” dated May 19, 2022, that claim the Marshals Service “is not in a position to enforce” federal and state law.
The Marshals Service should not engage protesters “unless they attempt to enter private property,” the post orders said, according to the senators. (That matches what members of the U.S. Marshals Service told The Daily Signal on the ground at Chief Justice John Roberts’ home in January.)
Additionally, June 4, 2022, post orders obtained by the lawmakers, dated four days before the attempt on Kavanaugh’s life, reportedly warned the marshals that they “should not engage in protest-related enforcement actions beyond that which are strictly and immediately necessary and tailored to ensure the physical safety of the Justices and their families.”
Like similar materials that Britt revealed in March, the post orders also allegedly ordered U.S. Marshals Service personnel that “[a]ny contemplated USMS enforcement action should be coordinated in advance” with the appropriate U.S. Attorney’s Office.
“This is the exact kind of thing from the Biden DOJ that continues to cause people across Alabama and America to fear that there is a two-tiered system of justice in our country,” Britt said in an emailed statement to The Daily Signal at the time. “The simple fact of the matter is that the Administration agreed with the protestors’ politics and willfully chose not to enforce the law.”
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