Supreme Court marshal asks Maryland, Virginia to enforce anti-protest laws at justices’ homes

by mcardinal

Willie R. Tubbs, FISM News


The military officer in charge of protecting the Supreme Court building and the men and women who work within has reached out to two states to request that each enforce the statutes that prevent protestors from picketing at the homes of justices.

Friday and Saturday, Col. Gail Curley, the marshal of the court who has already been tasked with investigating the draft leak that preceded the overturn of Roe v. Wade, sent letters to the governors of Maryland and Virginia, as well as county-level officials, urging each to apply the laws already on the books in their jurisdictions.

Fox News published a copy of Curley’s letter to Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, in which the marshal cited both state and local laws that she hoped Maryland’s law enforcement agencies would enforce.

“For weeks on end, large groups of protesters chanting slogans, using bullhorns, and banging drums have picketed Justices’ homes in Maryland,” Curley wrote.

Saturday, ABC News reported that Curley has sent a similar set of letters to Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, another Republican, who joined with Hogan to pen a mid-May letter asking U.S. Attorney Merrick Garland to step in and put an end to the protests. This effort, Curley wrote, has proven insufficient.

“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,” Curley wrote to Hogan. “Since then, protest activity at Justices’ homes, as well as threatening activity, has only increased.”

While the protests have intensified, so have the efforts of officials in Virginia and Maryland to have the federal government be the one to intercede. The concern on the part of Maryland and Virginia leaders is that state-level anti-protest laws would not withstand Constitutional scrutiny if challenged in court.

But, as various entities have played hot-potato with the issue, conservative justices have been subjected to threats and a general loss of peace in their homes.

Most notably, last month a man ventured to Maryland intent on murdering Justice Brett Kavanaugh, but the homes of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito have also been targeted in Maryland.

Saturday, through a statement provided by his communications director, Hogan again shifted blame to Garland and stated the laws in Maryland were unlikely to hold up in court.  

“Two months ago, Governor Hogan and Governor Youngkin sent a letter calling on Attorney General Garland to enforce the clear and unambiguous federal statutes on the books that prohibit picketing at judges’ residences,” the statement reads. “A month later, hours after an assassination attempt on Justice Kavanaugh, the Department of Justice finally responded, declining to enforce the laws.

“Now a different federal official is writing to us with conflicting information. Had the marshal taken time to explore the matter, she would have learned that the constitutionality of the statute cited in her letter has been questioned by the Maryland Attorney General’s Office.”

Youngkin has not, as of this writing, responded to Curley’s letter.

Garland has on numerous occasions stated that the Department of Justice takes seriously any threats to the justices and has ramped up security around the justices, but no major effort has yet been made to remove protestors en masse or enforce the recently bolstered federal laws protecting the justices.