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The man accused of attempting to assassinate U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh pleaded not guilty on Wednesday.
Nicholas John Roske, 26, of Simi Valley, California, was arrested outside Kavanaugh’s home in Maryland earlier this month armed with a gun, knife and burglary tools.
During his arraignment on Wednesday at the Southern Division Courthouse, in Greenbelt, Maryland, Roske pleaded not guilty.
His trial is set to begin on August 23, and if convicted, Roske faces a maximum sentence of life in prison.
Nicholas John Roske, 26, (left) pleaded not guilty on Wednesday after being arrested earlier this month for allegedly trying to kill Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh (right)
An FBI affidavit states that Roske told investigators that he was looking to kill Kavanaugh and himself on June 8. FBI agents are seen inside Roske’s Simi Valley, California, earlier this month
According to an FBI affidavit, Roske had flown from California to Washington and was spotted arriving at Kavanaugh’s home in the middle of the night on June 8, CBS reported.
He was carrying a suitcase armed with a Glock-17 pistol, two magazine clips, a speed loader, a tactical knife, pepper spray, zip ties, a hammer, screwdriver, nail punch and a crowbar.
Shortly after arriving on the scene, however, police said he called 911 saying he was having suicidal thoughts, telling the operator that he was going to kill Kavanaugh and then himself because he did not expect to get away with the crime.
Roske was quickly taken into custody following the call and allegedly confessed to investigators that he was upset about the leaked Supreme Court draft decision indicating that Kavanaugh and his fellow conservative justices were poised to overturn Roe V. Wade and women’s federal right to abortions.
Investigators added that Roske told them that he believed Kavanaugh would loosen gun laws in the country in the wake of the deadly Uvalde, Texas, school shooting.
‘Roske stated that he began thinking about how to give his life a purpose and decided that he would kill the Supreme Court Justice,’ according to the affidavit.
Roske (above) allegedly told detectives that he was upset about the leak of a recent Supreme Court draft decision regarding the right to abortion as well as the recent school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, and planned to give his life to stop Kavanaughs’ votes
Roske was arrested on a street nearby Kavanaugh’s Maryland home (pictured), where security has been reinforced following the incident
Protesters returned to Kavanaugh’s Maryland home just hours after Roske was arrested while carrying a disturbing arsenal of weapons and equipment
A woman holding a ‘liar’ sign with Kavanaugh’s face on it and another saying ‘mind your own uterus’ walk outside his home on Wednesday night
A Catholic native of Washington, Kavanaugh’s nomination in 2018 to the high court drew particularly heated debates over his views toward women and abortion rights.
He was forced to angrily deny sexually assaulting a woman at a party while attending school in a series of confirmation hearings that electrified – and divided – much of the U.S.
His confirmation gave conservatives a 5-4 majority on the court, which grew further when Catholic, stridently anti-abortion Amy Coney Barrett joined in October 2020 following the death of abortion-rights champion Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Following the leake decision last month, protests erupted in Washington D.C. and across the country over the expected ruling, with many fearing for the justices’ safety after protesters began demonstrating outside their homes and country clubs.
Members of the Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights group protested outside the home of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Saturday, calling on her to uphold women’s federal right to abortion
The protesters had their mouths tapped, wore blood-stained pants and carried around toy dolls during the demonstration. They said they were dawning symbols of the forced births that would take place if Roe V. Wade were overturned
It was the latest protests spurnned on by a leaked document from the high court showing that the conservative majority were poised to strike down America’s landmarkt abortion ruling
A barricade went up around the Supreme Court on May 14 following the leak about the abortion ruling
Congress has since passed legislation to bolster security around the nine justices, with Biden signing off on a bill this week to extend the protection to their families.
On Saturday, pro-abortion activists dressed in blood-soaked outfits and brandishing dolls held a protest outside the home of Justice Barrett.
Protesters from the Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights group gathered outside Barrett’s home in Falls Church, Virginia, waving signs calling on the Supreme Court to protect women’s federal abortion rights.
The group also carried dolls and wore white pants with blood stains around the crotch, which they said represented an increase in the number of forced births that would take place if Barrett and her fellow conservative justices strike down Roe v. Wade.
Security has already dramatically ramped up outside Justices’ D.C.-area homes and around the Supreme Court building, where a seven-foot tall, non-scalable fence was erected in May to keep protesters, demonstrators and other threats clear from the building and its employees.