All the facts about the attack on Paul Pelosi

(NewsNation) — Paul Pelosi, the 82-year-old husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), was violently assaulted with a hammer early Friday morning after a man entered the Pelosis’ San Francisco home with the intention of breaking Nancy Pelosi’s kneecaps, according to authorities.

Paul Pelosi was hospitalized following the attack, suffering a skull fracture and other blunt force injuries, according to a statement from the speaker’s office.

Here’s what we know — and don’t know — so far.

What happened?

In the early hours of Friday morning, an intruder, later identified as 42-year-old David DePape, entered the Pelosi home in the Pacific Heights neighborhood.

According to San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins, DePape broke into a glass door near the back of the home and went upstairs into a room where Paul Pelosi had been sleeping. She says Pelosi was forced out of bed and tried to reach an elevator that contained a phone, but was blocked by DePape.

Paul Pelosi, who was home alone at the time of the invasion, managed to make his way into the bathroom and called 911 to ask for help. Jenkins said realizing that Pelosi had alerted authorities, DePape took Pelosi downstairs near the entry of the home.

When police arrived, they found Paul Pelosi and DePape struggling for control of a hammer. That’s when police say DePape pulled the hammer away and struck Paul Pelosi. It’s unclear how many times he was struck with the hammer.

Officers then tackled DePape, disarmed him and took him into custody, San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said.

On Monday, Federal prosecutors filed felony charges against DePape, who told police he was looking for Nancy Pelosi and intended to break her kneecaps, according to the criminal complaint.

The complaint accuses DePape of committing two federal crimes: assaulting an immediate family member of a federal official and attempting to kidnap a federal official.

San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins also announced the following state-level charges against DePape: attempted murder, residential burglary, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, false imprisonment of an elder and threats to a public official and their family.

Jenkins said next steps in the state’s case involve DePape’s arraignment on Tuesday, where her office will be filing a motion to detain him without bail due to “obvious and severe public safety risks the defendant poses.”

You can read the latest about what happened here.

Has there been an arrest?

Yes; 42-year-old David Wayne DePape was arrested after police say they saw him attack Paul Pelosi with a hammer.

Has anyone been charged?

DePape faces federal charges for allegedly assaulting the immediate family member of a federal official and attempting to kidnap a federal official, court records show.

The assault charge carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, while the attempted kidnapping charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins announced multiple felony charges against DePape Monday afternoon. Those charges include: attempted murder, residential burglary, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, false imprisonment of an elder and threats to a public official and their family.

Who was in the house at the time?

Two people were in the home when police arrived: Paul Pelosi and David DePape, according to Randy Quezada, Communications Director at the San Francisco District Attorney’s office.

Was the attack politically motivated?

DePape told San Francisco Police that he broke into the house in order to “hold Nancy hostage” and “talk to her,” according to the criminal complaint. If she “lied,” DePape said he intended to break “her kneecaps.”

Throughout the interview with police, DePape said he viewed Nancy Pelosi as the “leader of the pack” of lies told by the Democratic Party, court documents read.

The San Francisco district attorney has described the attack as “politically motivated” and said the Pelosi family was “specifically targeted” by DePape.

Did the two men know each other?

No. Pelosi and DePape did not know each other prior to the attack, Quezada confirmed.

Who is the attacker?

David Depape is shown in Berkeley, Calif.,on Friday, Dec. 13, 2013. (Michael Short/San Francisco Chronicle via AP)

DePape was known in the area for being a “pro-nudity” activist who had picketed naked at protests against laws requiring people to be clothed in public.

He was also a conspiracy theorist who posted frequently online, often making racist and rambling comments.

His Facebook profile has since been taken down.

DePape had been living in a garage in Richmond, California for the last two years, according to federal prosecutors.

How did the attacker get inside?

DePape told San Francisco police that he entered the home by breaking a glass door with a hammer, the federal complaint said.

How did Pelosi call 911?

After informing DePape that Nancy Pelosi was not home, Paul Pelosi made his way to a bathroom where he called the police, according to court documents.

“Pelosi stated words to the effect of there is a male in the home and that the male is going to wait for
Pelosi’s wife,” federal investigators wrote. “Pelosi further conveyed that he does not know who the male is.”

The complaint says DePape told prosecutors that he did not leave the home after Pelosi called 911 because, much like the American founding fathers with the British, he was fighting against tyranny without the option of surrender.

Why didn’t Pelosi have security?

Unlike presidents, congressional leaders have security protection only for themselves, not their families. Nancy Pelosi, who was in Washington D.C. at the time of the attack, had security but her husband in California did not.

It’s unclear whether the Pelosi home had an alarm system or surveillance cameras working at the time of the attack.

Was the attacker carrying zip ties and duct tape?

Yes. Officers secured a roll of tape, white rope, a second hammer, a pair of rubber and cloth gloves, and zip ties from the crime scene, according to the federal complaint.

Was DePape working with someone else?

Law enforcement officials have not announced another suspect. As part of the investigation, the FBI will be looking at whether anyone may have encouraged DePape to carry out the attack. Investigators will also be determining how DePape got to Pelosi’s house.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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