As Kavanaugh Prepares for First Case, Ford Receives 'Unending' Death Threats

A steady stream of death threats has left Christine Blasey Ford unable to return to her home weeks after coming forward with sexual assault allegations against Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
October 8, 2018, 3:20pm
Melina Mara-Pool/Getty Images

As newly-confirmed Justice Brett Kavanaugh prepares to hear his first case this week, Christine Blasey Ford continues to receive an onslaught of death threats, the result of bringing sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh last month.

In a Sunday interview, Ford's attorney, Debra Katz, told MSNBC that the "unending" threats have left left Ford unable to return to the home from which she and her family initially fled three weeks ago due to safety concerns.


“This has been terrifying," Katz said. "Her family has been through a lot. They are not living at home. It's going to be quite some time before they're able to live at home.

"The threats have been unending," she continued. "It's deplorable. It's been very frightening."

In September, Ford's lawyers had cited the threats to Ford and her family in a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee to negotiate the terms of Ford's appearance before the committee's members. At the time, it appeared to Ford's team as though the committee planned on having Ford and Kavanaugh sit side-by-side at the same table in the hearing room.

"She has been the target of vicious harassment and even death threats," Ford's attorneys wrote in a letter to the committee's chairman, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley. "As a result of these kind of threats, her family was forced to relocate out of their home. Her email has been hacked, and she has been impersonated online.

“While Dr. Ford’s life was being turned upside down, you and your staff scheduled a public hearing for her to testify at the same table as Judge Kavanaugh in front of two dozen U.S. Senators on national television to relive this traumatic and harrowing incident."

Ford knew something of what would await her if she came forward with allegations against the then-Supreme Court nominee.

“Why suffer through the annihilation if it’s not going to matter?” she told the Washington Post last month.

And Ford spoke again of being "annihilated"—by the press, government officials, the general public—during her opening remarks before the Senate Judiciary: "I wondered if I would just be jumping in front of a train that was going where it was going anyway, and I would just be personally annihilated," Ford said.

As Ford continues to face the consequences of bringing sexual assault allegations against a man who now—after a Saturday afternoon vote—sits on the country's highest court, that man is going about his work as he might have otherwise.

Kavanaugh's clerks reportedly began work on Sunday, and the new justice could hear his first case as soon as Tuesday and Wednesday, a request from the Trump administration calling into question courts' authority over executive branch officials.

"We thought it was bad back in 1991, and it's even worse today, the political climate and how women are treated," Lisa Banks, another one of Ford's attorneys told MSNBC Sunday. "With Anita Hill, there was a full FBI investigation before there was ever a hearing. That did not occur here. This process was far worse."