Supreme Court justices failed to sign affidavits as part of a months-long investigation that failed to determine who leaked a draft version of the court’s decision overturning Roe x Wade for political last year.
Gail A Curley, the court marshal, revealed that detail in a brief statement on Friday.
“During the investigation, I spoke with each of the judges, several on multiple occasions,” she wrote. “The judges actively cooperated in this iterative process, asking questions and answering mine. I followed all the credible leads, none of which implicated the judges or their spouses.
“Based on this, I don’t believe it is necessary to ask ministers to sign affidavits.”
In a note announcing the lack of developments in the investigation, the court said that the leak of the draft of the opinion of minister Samuel Alito in Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization it was “one of the worst breaches of trust in its history” and “a serious attack on the judicial process”, but the person who provided the draft to a pair of reporters for the Washington DC-based publication has yet to be identified, despite The Marshal’s best efforts.
“The team has to date been unable to identify a person responsible for a preponderance of the evidence,” the court said. “As additional investigations produce new evidence or leads, investigators will pursue them. The marshal and her team will continue to have our full support.”
In a statement, former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, who Chief Justice John Roberts hired as a consultant to review the investigation, said the marshal and her team “conducted a thorough investigation within their lawful authorities.”
“During my review, investigators were transparent, cooperative, and available to answer my questions about the process. At this time, I am unable to identify any additional useful investigative measures,” he said.
Mr. Chertoff said Chief Justice Roberts also ordered a “comprehensive review of Court information and document security protocols to mitigate the risk of future incidents.”
The 19-page report revealed that the Marshal’s investigation determined that it was “unlikely” that the leak was caused by an outsider breaking into the Supreme Court’s IT systems. But on the question of whether someone with legitimate access to the systems was responsible, the report said a technical investigation did not lead to the identification of a suspect.
“After examining the Court’s computer devices, networks, printers, and available call and text logs, investigators found no forensic evidence indicating who released the draft opinion,” the report said.
During the investigation, the marshal and her aides interviewed 97 people with access to court systems, with some people speaking to investigators more than once, totaling 126 interviews.
“Despite these efforts, investigators have been unable at this time to determine, using a preponderance of the evidence standard, the identity of the person(s) who released the draft majority opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Org. or how the draft opinion was provided to political. Investigators continue to review and process some electronic data that was collected and some further investigations remain pending,” the report said. “As additional investigations produce new evidence or leads, investigators will pursue them.”