Extremist Looking for Nancy Pelosi Attacked Her Husband With a Hammer

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US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her husband Paul Pelosi arrive for a meeting with Prime Minister Boris Johnson at Downing Street on September 16, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Leon Neal / Getty Images)

Nancy Pelosi’s husband underwent surgery after being attacked in his San Francisco home by an intruder wielding a hammer and screaming “Where is Nancy?” 

Pelosi’s 82-year-old husband, Paul Pelosi, suffered blunt-force trauma injuries to his head and body and underwent surgery, according to Pelosi’s office. In a press conference Friday, police identified the suspect as 42-year-old David Depape. He espoused a grab bag of extremist views online, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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The suspect specifically targeted the house, the Associated Press reported. He was looking for Speaker Pelosi, who was in Washington, D.C., with her security detail, and shouted “Where is Nancy?” during his attack, according to multiple outlets.

 “When the officers arrived on scene they encountered an adult male and Mr. Pelosi’s husband Paul, our officers observed Mr. Pelosi and the suspect both holding a hammer,” said San Francisco Police Chief William Scott at a Friday press conference. “The suspect pulled the hammer away from Mr. Pelosi and violently assaulted him with it.”

The suspect is in custody and has been charged with attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary, and several other felonies. His motive is still undetermined, according to police.

Aerial footage of the Pelosi residence on Friday showed a glass-paned backdoor that the suspect smashed while breaking into the home at around 2.27 a.m, according to police.

Threats against members of Congress have surged in recent years. Last year, the U.S. Capitol police reported nearly 10,000 threats against lawmakers—almost triple what they documented five years age. Pelosi and her family, in particular, have been targeted by the extreme and fringe-right. 

Pelosi received “credible” online death threats ahead of the violent riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and she has been cited as a key figure in multiple conspiracies that have previously been the primary cause of violent action like Pizzagate and QAnon. 

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On sites and social media platforms where these conspiracies flourish, the attack is already being celebrated or used as a jumping-off point for further conspiratorial thoughts, including labeling it a false flag. 

“Yeah, okaaaaaaay……that wasn’t staged ahead of the midterms to demonize the ‘Domestic Extremist Terrorist right,” one wrote. “Their tactics are so predictable and obvious and sloppy.”

Pelosi’s home has previously been the focal point of several protests from activists on both sides of the political spectrum, and the couple’s address can be easily found online—despite the fact that the House Speaker is second in the line of succession to the White House.

In August, pro-China protesters held an action outside her home regarding the speaker’s trip to Taiwan. Earlier in the year, abortion-rights activists also went to her home. In 2019, right-wing-activist-turned-failed-GOP-candidate Laura Loomer jumped the fence with people she described as “illegal aliens” and set up a tent on Pelosi’s property. She was quickly escorted off the property.

Pelosi and her husband, who is a venture capitalist and a millionaire, have also been under scrutiny amid an ongoing debate about whether lawmakers and their spouses should be permitted to play the stock market. Articles zeroing in on Pelosi’s wealth have been shared widely across far-right online ecosystems, fueling fringe narratives about corruption in the Democratic Party.

Paul Pelosi was also recently charged with DUI after a car crash in May.

President Joe Biden contacted Nancy Pelosi Friday morning to “express his support after this horrible attack,” according to a statement from the White House Press Secretary. “The President continues to condemn all violence and asks that the family’s desire for privacy be respected.”

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