Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts condemned the Arizona shooting spree Saturday that took the life of a federal jurist and five others, and gravely wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.).

Roberts released a rare public statement to address the tragedy.

"The violence in Arizona today has senselessly taken five lives and inflicted tragic loss on dedicated public servants and their families," Roberts said. "We in the judiciary have suffered the terrible loss of one of our own.

"Chief Judge John Roll was a wise jurist who selflessly served Arizona and the nation with great distinction, as attorney and judge, for more than 35 years," he said. "I express my deepest condolences to his wife Maureen and his children, as well as the other victims and their families. Chief Judge Roll’s death is a somber reminder of the importance of the rule of law and the sacrifices of those who work to secure it.”

U.S. District Judge Roll was reportedly returning home from daily Mass when he stopped to say hi to Giffords at a "Congress at Your Corner" event she was holding outside a Safeway store in Tucson, Ariz.