US: Pelosi suspect wanted to hold House Speaker hostage, say police

David DePape broke into Nancy Pelosi’s home and struck the Democratic leader’s 82-year-old husband in the head with a hammer

By AP

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Nancy Pelosi and Paul Pelosi. — AP file
Nancy Pelosi and Paul Pelosi. — AP file

Published: Mon 31 Oct 2022, 11:38 PM

The man accused of attacking Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, told police he wanted to hold the House Speaker hostage and “break her kneecaps”, authorities said on Monday.

David DePape, 42, confronted a sleeping Paul Pelosi in the couple’s San Francisco bedroom early on Friday morning, according to a federal affidavit filed in court on Monday.


Federal prosecutors have filed two charges against DePape, days after police say he broke into the Pelosi’s home and struck the Democratic leader’s 82-year-old husband in the head with a hammer. He was left seriously injured in the attack, underwent surgery for a skull fracture, and suffered other injuries to his arms and hands.

DePape is charged federally with influencing, impeding, or retaliating against a federal official by threatening or injuring a family member. He also faces one count of attempted kidnapping of a United States official on account of the performance of official duties.


The announcement of the federal charges comes as San Francisco’s district attorney is set to announce state criminal charges as well against DePape. He was arrested on Friday on suspicion of attempted murder, elder abuse and burglary and is expected to be arraigned on state charges Tuesday.

San Francisco’s district attorney, Brooke Jenkins, also rejected conspiracy theories about the attack, confirming the assailant was targeting the Democratic leader when he broke into the couple’s home and confronted Paul Pelosi.

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