GREENBELT, Md.—The California man accused of attempting to murder Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh made his first court appearance on June 8 in federal court.
Nicholas John Roske, 26, appeared in court hours after being arrested with a Glock 17 pistol and a tactical knife in Chevy Chase, Maryland, near where Kavanaugh and his family reside, according to court documents obtained by The Epoch Times.
Roske was arraigned inside the federal courthouse in Greenbelt on a charge of attempted murder or threatening to murder a justice, which could land him 20 years in prison.
Roske walked in unrestrained and unmasked, wearing a long-sleeve dark shirt and black pants. He was accompanied by four U.S. Marshals. One fetched him a blue surgical mask, which he accepted and donned without protest. Masks are still required in the courthouse.
Asked if he understood the charge against him, Roske said: “I think I have a reasonable understanding, but I wouldn’t say I’m thinking clearly.”
He said he was on medications prescribed by a doctor, without naming them.
During the hearing, Roske repeatedly conferred with his lawyer, a public defender, after being asked questions by U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy Sullivan. The hearing ended with Roske remaining in custody, although his lawyer indicated there may be an attempt for pretrial release at a later date.
According to charging documents, Roske told law enforcement officers following his arrest that he was upset about the recent leak of a Supreme Court draft decision indicating that the nation’s top court is poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, as well as the May 24 shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.
“ROSKE indicated that he believed the Justice that he intended to kill would side with Second Amendment decisions that would loosen gun control laws,” reads an affidavit filed in court by an FBI agent. “ROSKE stated that he began thinking about how to give his life a purpose and decided that he would kill the Supreme Court Justice after finding the Justice’s Montgomery County address on the Internet.”