Paul Pelosi attack suspect David DePape’s ex-partner apologises as report claims he was carrying zip ties

Gypsy Taub, the alleged ex-partner of David DePape, described how the 42-year-old once disappeared for a year and when he returned he wasn’t the same person

Johanna Chisholm
Monday 31 October 2022 13:25 GMT
Dispatch call reveals how Paul Pelosi secretly alerted authorities to attack

David DePape, the man suspected of attacking Nancy Pelosi’s husband, was “mentally ill for a long time” before the assault, his former partner alleged amid new claims that he brought zip ties to the San Francisco home in addition to the hammer used in the assault.

Mr DePape, 42, was arrested on Friday at the House speaker home where he and Paul Pelosi were seen fighting over a hammer by officers who had responded to the 911 call.

Mr Pelosi, 82, was struck at least once by the suspect before officers managed to tackle him and take him into custody.

The hammer used in the assault was reportedly brought by Mr DePape, according to a law enforcement source and a senior congressional aide briefed on the assault, CNN reported.

In addition to the suspected weapon used in the attack, Mr DePape had also brought with him a bag that contained multiple zip ties and duct tape, according to two sources who have been briefed on the incident, CNN added.

The 42-year-old will be indicted on charges of attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary “and several, several other additional felonies,” according to San Francisco Police Chief William Scott.

The motive for the attack is still being determined, officers said Friday at a press briefing, but a former partner of the suspected attacker revealed new details in an interview with ABC 7 about his past that she believes are relevant to the current accusations he is facing.

“He is mentally ill. He has been mentally ill for a long time,” said Gypsy Taub, who called the news station from the California Institution for Women in Corona, California on Friday evening.

Taub was last year found guilty on 20 counts, including the attempted abduction of a 14-year-old boy near his Berkeley high school.

The woman, who claimed to be the ex-life partner of Mr DePape and the mother of his children, is a well-known nudist activist in San Francisco the news outlet reported.

The pair met 20 years ago and raised their two sons and Taub’s daughter before they officially parted ways seven years ago, she said.

While being interviewed by the news outlet, she discussed an incident that occurred one time while they were together during which Mr DePape disappeared for a year and when he returned, was not the same person.

“He came back in very bad shape. He thought he was Jesus. He was constantly paranoid, thinking people were after him,” Taub said. “And it took a good year or two to get back to, you know, being halfway normal.”

When pressed by the news outlet about his past political affiliations, Taub relayed that he’d always aligned with her own persuasions which fell on the progressive side of the spectrum.

“Well when I met him, he was only 20 years old and he didn’t have any experience in politics,” said the former partner of Mr DePape, noting that “he was very much in alignment with my views and I’ve always been very progressive.”

“I absolutely admire Nancy Pelosi,” she added, before sending a message to the House speaker and her family that she would like to “express my deepest apology to Nancy Pelosi and her husband for the terrible tragic thing that happened.”

While the 42-year-old suspect didn’t seem to harbour ill-feelings toward the top Democrat when he was partner with Taub, that seems to have changed recently as he appeared to be immersed in a toxic online culture of far-right conspiracy theories.

In posts reviewed by The Independent, Mr DePape seemed to have shared posts on a subscription-based blog where he has expressed a range of transphobic, antisemitic and racist views, alongside conspiracy theories tied to Covid-19 and QAnon.#

He reportedly became more consistent with these rantings in recent weeks, where he appears to have posted several times a day on his Wix-hosted website up until one day before the 28 October attack.

Of the topics covered in those posts, there are messages that describe Holocaust denialism, Covid-19 vaccines conspiracy theories, enthusiasm for the alt-right antagonist and anti-vaxxer Jordan Peterson and a full-throated support for former president Donald Trump to run for reelection with Tulsi Gabbard as his running mate.

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