David DePape found guilty of attack on Paul Pelosi

November 16, 2023

A federal jury found David DePape guilty in last year’s violent attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).

Prosecutors successfully argued that 43-year-old DePape assaulted then-82-year-old Pelosi in the early morning hours October 28, 2022 in the couple’s California home.

The attack with a hammer left Pelosi with a fractured skull.

DePape had been arrested on the scene and later charged with attempted kidnapping and assault. 

At the time of the attack authorities said a man dressed in all black and walking with a backpack near the Pelosi home around 2 a.m. possessed zip ties, a rope and hammer in the backpack, which he planned to use to kidnap and torture the then-Speaker, who was in Washington DC that night.

The assault was captured on surveillance video.

During his trial, which began November 9, DePape said he went to the couple’s home to talk to then-Speaker Pelosi about Russian interference in the 2016 election and that her husband was “never my target.”

DePape further testified that he was “sorry” that Paul Pelosi “got hurt,” adding that the attack happened in reaction to his plan being “basically ruined.” 

In his own testimony, Paul Pelosi said DePape had burst through his bedroom door and asked repeatedly, “Where’s Nancy?”

“I recognized I was in serious danger, so I tried to stay as calm as possible,” Mr. Pelosi said.

Ahead of the assault, DePape had posted rants online about aliens, communists, religious minorities, and global elites along with various QAnon conspiracy theories that claim the government is run by pedophiles, and he questioned President Biden’s 2020 election victory. The posts were taken down shortly after his arrest.

In November 2022, just weeks after her husband’s attack, then-Speaker Pelosi stepped back from House leadership, stating that she would continue as a member of the House “to speak for the people of San Francisco.”

Speaker Emerita Pelosi said in September that she would be running for reelection in 2024.

The charges against DePape, assault and attempted kidnapping, respectively carry maximum sentences of 20 years and 30 years in prison.

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