Wednesday, November 2, 2022

A man invaded the home of Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi in San Francisco, California, early Friday morning and assaulted her husband, Paul Pelosi.

David Wayne DePape, 42, is suspected to have infiltrated their residence in Pacific Heights and repeatedly shouted, “Where is Nancy?” whilst the Speaker was in Washington, D.C. Paul Pelosi is reported to have called 9-1-1 from the bathroom at about 2 AM. In a press conference on the day of the attack, San Francisco police chief William Scott confirmed a dispatcher heard DePape making threats, and officers arrived at about 2:30 AM to both men holding a hammer (which DePape had brought).

Scott reported: “The suspect pulled the hammer away from Mr. Pelosi and violently assaulted him with it. Our officers immediately tackled the suspect, disarmed him, took him into custody, requested emergency backup and rendered medical aid.”

Pelosi was taken to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and received surgery for a fractured skull and “serious injuries to his right arm and hands” but is expected to fully recover, according to the Speaker’s spokesperson, Drew Hammill.

Hammill continued, “The Speaker and her family are thankful for the outpouring of support and prayers from friends, constituents and people around the country. The Pelosi family is immensely grateful to Mr. Pelosi’s entire medical team and the law enforcement officers who responded to the assault. The family appreciates respect for their privacy during this time.”

DePape, too, was taken to a hospital before being booked at the San Francisco County Jail.

The United States Capitol Police deployed agents to aid state and local authorities in their investigation.

US Representative Madeleine Dean, a Democrat from Pennsylvania, “Everyone is shaken. It’s absolutely chilling. You can be against me for what I stand for. But the vitriol to the point of spurring violence is so unacceptable.”

Dean has been the subject of threats of violence after serving as an impeachment manager during the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump; consequently, she has purchased a bulletproof vest. She added, “Who thought I was going to walk into service and need one of those?”

You can be against me for what I stand for. But the vitriol to the point of spurring violence is so unacceptable.

US Representative and Republican Whip Steve Scalise, a Republican from Louisiana, who was himself shot by a “domestic violent extremist” in 2017, said that the attack on Pelosi “disgusted” him, and that he had called the Speaker.

US President Joe Biden, a Democrat, said in Pennsylvania Friday evening the assault was “despicable” and that Americans should “stand up clearly and unambiguously” in opposition to political bloodshed.

Meanwhile Governor of Virginia Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, told supporters in a campaign speech, “Speaker Pelosi’s husband had a break in last night in their house and he was assaulted. There’s no room for violence anywhere. But we’re gonna send her back to be with him in California. That’s what we’re gonna go do.”

He was rebuked for the comments by Virginia Democrats as “shameful”, “a failure of leadership”, and a “taunt…because he disagrees with her [Pelosi’s] politics”.

Prosecutors allege that the assault was politically motivated, intended as retribution for the Speaker’s “performance of her official duties”. DePape had informed the police that he had intended to take her hostage and question her; if she “told the truth” he would release her, and if she “lied”, DePape would break her kneecaps.

On Monday, federal prosecutors charged DePape with assault on a family member of a U.S. official and attempted kidnapping of a U.S. official, while state prosecutors separately filed charges including attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, burglary, elder abuse, and threatening a public official. The maximum combined sentences for the federal charges would be 50 years’ imprisonment, while the state charges’ combined would be 13 years to life in prison.

DePape was arraigned for the state charges in the San Francisco County Superior Court Tuesday, pleading not guilty on all. The judge directed his continued jailing without bail and imposed a restraining order preventing him from approaching the Pelosi family or their home or communicating with them.


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