Police: Pelosi Suspect Wanted To Hold House Speaker Hostage

WASHINGTON (AP) — The man accused of attacking Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, informed police he needed to carry the speaker hostage and “break her kneecaps,” authorities mentioned Monday.

David DePape, 42, confronted a sleeping Paul Pelosi within the couple’s San Francisco bed room early Friday morning, in line with a federal affidavit filed in courtroom Monday.

Federal prosecutors have filed two prices in opposition to DePape, days after police say he broke into the Pelosi’s home and struck the Democratic chief’s 82-year-old husband within the head with a hammer. He was left significantly injured within the assault, underwent surgical procedure for a cranium fracture, and suffered different accidents to his arms and palms.

DePape is charged federally with influencing, impeding, or retaliating in opposition to a federal official by threatening or injuring a member of the family. He additionally faces one rely of tried kidnapping of a United States official on account of the efficiency of official duties.

The announcement of the federal prices comes as San Francisco’s district legal professional is about to announce state felony prices as nicely in opposition to DePape, who police say shouted out “Where is Nancy?” in the course of the assault. He was arrested Friday on suspicion of tried homicide, elder abuse and housebreaking and is anticipated to be arraigned on state prices Tuesday.

San Francisco’s district legal professional, Brooke Jenkins, additionally rejected conspiracy theories in regards to the assault, confirming the assailant was concentrating on the Democratic chief when he broke into the couple’s dwelling.

“At the time that the suspect had entered the Pelosi home that he was in fact, looking for Ms. Pelosi,” Jenkins informed reporters late Sunday in San Francisco.

“The other thing is we want to make it clear that there were only two people in the home at the time that the police arrived, Mr. Pelosi and the suspect, there was no third person present,” she mentioned.

“We have nothing to suggest that these two men knew each other prior to this incident.”

The district legal professional’s remarks come because the ugly assault on the husband of the House speaker is being mocked and dismissed in conservative, far-right social media, even amongst some Republicans leaders and people on the highest ranges of social energy. San Francisco’s police chief has additionally mentioned the assault was focused.

Elon Musk over the weekend tweeted, then deleted, a fringe web site’s far-flung conspiracy theories to his tens of millions of followers, as his buy of Twitter has raised issues that the social media platform would now not search to restrict misinformation and hate speech.

In the poisonous political local weather, every week earlier than the midterm elections, tensions are excessive with document safety threats in opposition to lawmakers and different officers.

Paul Pelosi stays hospitalized in San Francisco after present process surgical procedure for a fractured cranium and different accidents. Speaker Pelosi, who was in Washington, D.C., on the time, returned swiftly to California. Unlike presidents, the congressional leaders have safety safety for themselves, however not their households.

The assault was an unsettling echo of the Jan. 6, 2021 rebel on the Capitol, when rioters attempting to overturn Joe Biden’s election defeat of Donald Trump stormed the halls eerily calling “Where’s Nancy?” DePape, was additionally carrying zip ties into the Pelosi dwelling, two folks briefed on the matter informed The Associated Press. The folks couldn’t talk about particulars of the investigation publicly and spoke to AP on situation of anonymity.

Police have been dispatched to the house within the upscale Pacific Heights neighborhood round 2:20 a.m. Friday after Paul Pelosi positioned a 911 name. Jenkins mentioned DePape broke into the rear door and made his means upstairs to confront Paul Pelosi. Police mentioned they arrived to see the 2 males struggling over a hammer, when DePape struck Pelosi not less than as soon as earlier than being tackled by officers.

The incident sparked contemporary safety issues for lawmakers and different elected officers earlier than the midterms.

With practically 10,000 threats in opposition to members of Congress within the final year, U.S. Capitol Police have suggested lawmakers to take precautions. Chief Tom Manger, who leads the U.S. Capitol Police, has mentioned the risk from lone-wolf attackers has been rising and probably the most vital risk the pressure is going through is the traditionally excessive variety of threats in opposition to lawmakers, hundreds greater than only a few years earlier than.

The beating of the speaker’s husband follows different assaults and threats. This summer time, a person carrying a gun, a knife and zip ties was arrested close to Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s home in Maryland after threatening to kill the justice. In 2017, Republican Rep. Steve Scalise was significantly injured when a Bernie Sanders supporter opened hearth on Republicans at a congressional baseball recreation follow.

Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., was amongst these making mild of the assault on Paul Pelosi, tweeting out a joke a couple of Halloween costume of the incident.

Mascaro reported from Washington, D.C.

Associated Press author Michael Balsamo contributed to this report.

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