An armed man was arrested overnight near — but not at — the Maryland home of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh early Wednesday (June 8) morning, the Washington Post reports.
Law enforcement officials said the California man — described as being in his mid-20s — had a handgun, knife and pepper spray with him at the time of his arrest and said he was there to kill Kavanaugh.
“At approximately 1:50 a.m. today, a man was arrested near Justice Kavanaugh’s residence,” the court said in a statement obtained by NBC News. “The man was armed and made threats against Justice Kavanaugh. He was transported to Montgomery County Police 2nd District.”
Officials confirmed the California man traveled from out of state and took a taxi to Kavanaugh’s suburban Chevy Chase, Maryland neighborhood at around 1:50 a.m. ET, hours before the Supreme Court justices were scheduled to issue more rulings amid the final weeks of the annual session.
The incident took place amid a rise in threats against the Supreme Court following the leaked draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, according to a memo issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security last month warning of potential threats to the justices, which acknowledged a significant increase in social media threats of violence, including some that were under investigation.
The US. Supreme Court is currently surrounded by fencing, has been closed to the public since March 2020 and justices no longer announce opinions from the courtroom bench in adherence to COVID-19 protocols.