Background18 U.S.C. § 351
Section 351 of Title 18, United States Code, makes it a Federal
to kill or kidnap a Member of Congress, a Member-of-Congress elect, certain
specified executive branch officials, a major Presidential or Vice
candidate, a Justice of the Supreme Court or a person nominated to be a
Attempts and conspiracies to commit such offenses or to assault any such
individual are also made criminal by this section.|
As of April 24, 1996, all Federal officials covered under 18 U.S.C
§ 351 are also covered under the expanded coverage provided in
of Title 18 for all employees of all branches, departments, and agencies of
United States Government, including active duty military personnel.
Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996, § 727(a), Pub.
104-132, 110 Stat. 1214, 1302. However, unlike § 351, section 1114
that the violent attack upon the Federal official be committed while the
official "is engaged in or on account of the performance of official
Hence, § 351 is a broader statute and should continue to be used for
Federal officials encompassed within its ambit. Section 1114 and related
statutes are now available, however, for violent attacks upon other
employees of the Congress and the Supreme Court not covered by
It should also be noted that family members of all Federal
are now protected by § 115(a)(1) of Title 18 against assault,
murder, as well as attempts or threats to assault, kidnap, or murder.
such violent acts must be done "with the intent to impede, intimidate, or
interfere with" such Federal employee "while engaged in the performance of
official duties, or with intent to retaliate against" such Federal employee.
Section 115(a)(2) of Title 18 covers threats against all Federal
employees, including those covered by § 351, when such threat is done
intent to impede, intimidate, or interfere with" such Federal employee
engaged in the performance of official duties, or with intent to retaliate
against" such Federal employee.
In addition, § 115(a)(2) of Title 18 was expanded, as of April
1996, to cover assault, kidnapping, and murder, as well as attempts to
murder or threats to assault, kidnap, or murder, any former Federal
including any former Member or employee of Congress or former Justice or
of the Supreme Court, with intent to retaliate against such person on
the performance of official duties. See Antiterrorism and Effective
Penalty Act of 1996, § 727(b), Pub. L. 104-132, 110 Stat. 1214, 1302.
Moreover, the family members of all former Federal employees are now covered
under § 115(b) against assault or murder, including any attempt to
or murder, directed towards them on or after April 24, 1996, provided such
was done with intent to retaliate against the former Federal employee on
of the performance of his/her official duties during the term of his/her
[cited in USAM 9-65.700]