David Depape is shown in Berkeley, Calif.,on Friday, Dec. 13, 2013. An intruder attacked and severely beat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband with a hammer in the couple’s San Francisco home early Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, while searching for the Democratic leader. Police were called to the home to check on Paul Pelosi when they discovered the 82-year-old and the suspect, Depape, both grabbing onto the hammer, said Police Chief William Scott.
Michael Short | San Francisco Chronicle | AP
David DePape, the man accused of breaking into House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s residence and violently assaulting her husband with a hammer, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges including attempted murder, according to NBC news.
DePape’s arraignment in San Francisco Superior Court came as Paul Pelosi, the 82-year-old spouse of the top-ranking House Democrat, remained hospitalized after the alleged attack early Friday morning.
The 42-year-old suspect was booked in San Francisco county jail on numerous state charges, including attempted murder, burglary, assault and false imprisonment, after being discharged from the hospital.
The Department of Justice has also charged DePape with two federal crimes, attempted kidnapping of a federal official and assaulting an immediate family member of a United States official with the intent to retaliate against the official, according to his criminal complaint.
DePape was unshaven and had long hair in his first court appearance, NBC reported. He wore an orange jump suit, and his arm was in a sling due to a dislocated shoulder, his public defender Adam Lipson told reporters after the brief hearing Tuesday afternoon.
DePape is currently being held without bail, Lipson said, adding that another hearing is set for Friday.
The attorney also gave his best wishes to Paul Pelosi, who is recovering after undergoing surgery to repair a skull fracture.
Lipson declined to offer specifics about his defense strategy, but noted that there has “been a lot of speculation regarding Mr. DePape’s vulnerability to misinformation, and that’s certainly something that we’re going to look into.”
San Francisco District Attorney said Monday that the attack at the Pelosi residence appeared to be “politically motivated.”
Paul Pelosi told a police officer after the attack that DePape had woken him up in his bedroom early Friday morning and said he wanted to talk to “Nancy,” according to a federal affidavit.
Nancy Pelosi was in Washington, D.C., at the time. Paul Pelosi managed to call 9-1-1, and when officers arrived, DePape struck him with the hammer, authorities said.
DePape himself later told police he saw the House speaker as the “‘leader of the pack’ of lies told by the Democratic Party,” the affidavit said. He said he wanted to hold her hostage and talk to her, and if she lied he would break her kneecaps, the document said.
DePape had arrived at the San Francisco home toting zip ties, tape, rope and at least one hammer, according to the affidavit.