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Supreme Court marshal calls on Maryland officials to enforce laws banning protests outside justices’ homes

The Supreme Court’s top-ranking security official has sent letters to Maryland lawmakers demanding they utilize police and law enforcement to prevent picketing at the homes of justices.

Supreme Court Marshal Gail Curley sent two letters — one addressed to Gov. Larry Hogan and another to Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich — demanding that authorities put an end to picketing and “threatening activity” outside the homes of SCOTUS justices.

Last month, 26-year-old Nicholas Roske arrived at Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s Maryland home with designs on killing Kavanaugh and then himself, prosecutors say. Roske ended giving himself up without harming anyone.

“I am writing to request that the Maryland State Police, in conjunction with local authorities as appropriate, enforce laws that prohibit picketing outside of the homes of Supreme Court Justices who live in Maryland,” Curley wrote in her letter to Hogan.

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“You recently stated that you were ‘deeply concerned’ that ‘hundreds of demonstrators have recently chosen to picket Supreme Court Justices at their homes in… Maryland,’ while using ‘threatening language’ — jeopardizing ‘the integrity of our American judicial system and the safety of our citizen,” the marshal wrote. “Since then, protest activity at Justices’ homes, as well as threatening activity, has only increased.”

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Curley instructed Hogan to utilize the state police and Maryland’s legal resources to end the protests.

“I would respectfully request that you direct the Maryland State Police to enforce Maryland and Montgomery County laws that squarely prohibit picketing at the homes of Supreme Court Justices who reside in Maryland.”

Hogan, along with Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, have called on the Department of Justice to enforce the federal statute that prohibits protests, pickets and other forms of intimidation outside the home of judges.

Pro-choice protesters demonstrate outside U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito's home on June 27, 2022, in Alexandria, Virginia. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

It is illegal under federal law to attempt to influence a judge’s ruling or interfere with the discharge of their duty. The Justice Department, however, has thus far refused to interfere with demonstrators outside the homes of several Supreme Court justices, including Clarence Thomas, Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh. 

While the DOJ has provided security at the justices’ homes, they have allowed protests and picketing to continue unimpeded.

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