A Supreme Court spokesperson said doctors "believe the fall was likely due to lightheadedness caused by dehydration"

By Benjamin VanHoose
July 08, 2020 10:56 AM
Chief Justice John Roberts in September
Cindy Ord/Getty

Chief Justice John Roberts suffered a head injury after a fall last month.

On Tuesday, Supreme Court spokesperson Kathleen Arberg confirmed to The Washington Post that Roberts, 65, fell while exercise-walking at a country club in Maryland on Sunday, June 21, and was hospitalized for one night. He was treated with sutures, according to the news outlet, and discharged the following morning.

The health scare was revealed after the Post received a tip from a witness who claimed to have seen Roberts bleeding from the head during the incident at the club.

“The chief justice was treated at a local hospital on June 21 for an injury to his forehead sustained in a fall while walking for exercise near his home,” Arberg said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.

“The injury required sutures, and out of an abundance of caution, he stayed in the hospital overnight and was discharged the next morning,” added Arberg. “His doctors ruled out a seizure. They believe the fall was likely due to lightheadedness caused by dehydration.”

The New York Times noted that Roberts — who was nominated as a chief justice by former President George W. Bush and took his seat in September 2005 — previously experienced seizures in 1993 and 2007.

Chief Justice John Roberts in January
Matt Rourke/AP/Shutterstock

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News of Roberts' health scare comes weeks after fellow justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg was hospitalized for a gallbladder condition. A statement from the Supreme Court in May said that Ginsburg, 87, was "glad to be home."

"Justice Ginsburg has been discharged from the hospital. She is doing well and glad to be home," read the statement at the time. "The Justice will return to The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, for follow-up outpatient visits over the next few weeks to eventually remove the gallstone non-surgically."

In a prior statement, the Supreme Court said Ginsburg "underwent non-surgical treatment for acute cholecystitis, a benign gallbladder condition," at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

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The Supreme Court has made several major rulings in recent weeks, including anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ workers and blocking the Trump administration's push to end DACA.

Last month, Roberts — who is typically a conservative-leaning judge — sided with his liberal counterparts on a 5-4 vote to strike down a restrictive Louisiana law that required doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. It was the court's first major abortion-rights case since 2018.