David Depape, 42, charged with attempted homicide for hammer attack on Paul Pelosi

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott says officers witnessed Mr Depape ‘violently assault’ Paul Pelosi with a hammer

Andrew Feinberg
Friday 28 October 2022 19:19 BST
Nancy Pelosi's husband attacked during break-in at San Francisco home
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The man arrested for allegedly assaulting the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is a 42-year-old resident of Berkeley, California, named David Depape, the San Francisco Police Department has said.

According to San Francisco Police chief Bill Scott, officers arrested Mr Depape at the home of Ms Pelosi after they encountered him struggling with the House speaker’s husband, Paul Pelosi, fighting with him over a hammer.

Mr Scott said officers witnessed Mr Depape pull the hammer from Mr Pelosi’s grasp, at which point he “violently assaulted” the real estate and technology investor with it.

“Our officers immediately tackled the suspect disarmed him, took him into custody, requested emergency backup and rendered medical aid,” he said. He added that Mr Depape is currently being held at the San Francisco County Jail and will be arraigned on charges of attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary and “several several other additional felonies”.

San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said more state charges were possible, as well as federal charges filed by the US Attorney for the Northern District of California.

Mr Scott said the motive for the assault was still being looked into by investigators from the SFPD, Federal Bureau of Investigation and US Capitol Police.

But sources familiar with the matter have said the alleged assailant specifically targeted the home of Mr and Ms Pelosi and was there looking for the Speaker.

Police tape blocks a street outside the home of Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in San Francisco (AP)

Sources also said he made his intentions clear by shouting “where is Nancy?” as he assaulted Mr Pelosi. The chilling comment harkens back to calls from the Capitol rioters during the January 6 attack seeking the House speaker.

“Mr Pelosi was taken to the hospital, where he is receiving excellent medical care and is expected to make a full recovery,” Ms Pelosi’s office said in a statement. “The Speaker and her family are grateful to the first responders and medical professionals involved, and request privacy at this time”.

Police are seen outside Nancy Pelosi’s home in San Francisco after her husband Paul Pelosi was violently assaulted (KTVU)

In a statement, the US Capitol Police said special agents with the department’s California field office are assisting the Federal Bureau of Investigation and San Francisco Police Department with a “joint investigation” into the break-in, including the alleged assailant’s motivations.

“Special Agents with the USCP’s California Field Office quickly arrived on scene, while a team of investigators from the Department’s Threat Assessment Section was simultaneously dispatched from the East Coast to assist the FBI and the San Francisco Police with a joint investigation,” a department spokesperson said in a statement.

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