With the Cold War over, he expanded his philanthropy to the United States, Africa, and Asia, supporting a vast array of new efforts to create more accountable, transparent, and democratic societies. He was one of the early prominent voices to criticize the war on drugs as “arguably more harmful than the drug problem itself,” and helped kick-start America’s medical marijuana movement. In the early 2000s, he became a vocal backer of same-sex marriage efforts. Though his causes evolved over time, they continued to hew closely to his ideals of an open society.
Rob- Judge returns fire
It was just another Monday morning when Judge Joseph Bruzzese, Jr. parked his car in his reserved spot next to the Jefferson County courthouse in Steubenville, OH yesterday. Within a couple of minutes things would change.
As Judge Bruzzese walked toward the stairs leading up to the courthouse shortly before 8 AM, he was “ambushed” by Nathaniel Richmond. According to Sheriff Abdalla, video footage showed a vehicle with 2 occupants at 7:12 AM which then left and returned at 7:30.
Richmond approached the judge and shot him at near-point blank range in the chest then took off running toward the vehicle. Judge Bruzzese was armed and both he and a probation officer returned fire. Video showed the judge taking 5 shots at Richmond. Richmond was shot and killed by one of the two.
The sheriff said had the probation officer not been there, “this “gentleman” would have kept on shooting until he killed the judge.”
Although Richmond had never appeared in Judge Bruzzese court, he has had been involved in a number of cases in the last several years. He had filed a lawsuit in the judge’s court in April, alleging wrongful death in the death of his mother in a house fire in 2015. The hearing was scheduled for the end of August.
Richmond was the father of Ma’lik Richmond who served 10 months in juvenile detention after a conviction, along with another high school football player, for the rape of a 16 year-old girl in 2012. Richmond was a star on the football team and the case got international attention amid allegations of a cover-up to protect the football team. Ma’lik had no contact with the judge in his case.
Judge Bruzzese was alert and talking after the shooting and was airlifted to the hospital in nearby Pittsburgh and is expected to survive. Judge Bruzzese has served on the court since 1997 and had been elected to the most recent 6 year term in 2014. He had started carrying a gun years ago because there’s “nutcases out there who want retaliation.”