Have some sitting US Supreme Court justices been subject to assassination plots?

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U.S. Supreme Court Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Sonia Sotomayor have been the subjects of assassination plots.

On June 8, 2022, a man was arrested outside of conservative Justice Kavanaugh’s house and charged with attempted murder. According to the FBI, the man indicated wanting to kill two other justices as well.

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A year earlier, U.S. District Court Judge Esther Salas reported that the assailant who killed her son and wounded her husband had a dossier on liberal Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

Justice Samuel Alito told the Wall Street Journal in April 2023 that the decision to remove the federal right to abortion, following the leak of his draft to Politico on May 2, 2022, made him and other Supreme Court justices “targets of assassination.”

No Supreme Court justices have been assassinated in history or injured in an attempt, according to New Republic. In 1889, an assassination attempt was made against Justice Stephen J. Field, but the assailant was stopped by Field’s bodyguard.

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Jayne Williamson-Lee is a freelance science journalist who is part of MinnPost’s fact briefs team.

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