House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) husband, Paul Pelosi, is in the hospital after being attacked in their San Francisco home early Friday morning.
“Early this morning, an assailant broke into the Pelosi residence in San Francisco and violently assaulted Mr. Pelosi,” the speaker’s office said in a statement posted Friday morning.
Paul Pelosi “underwent successful surgery to repair a skull fracture and serious injuries to his right arm and hands,” the speaker’s spokesperson added later.
San Francisco Police Chief William Scott said during a press briefing that 42-year-old David DePape is in custody and will be booked at San Francisco County Jail on charges of “attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary, and several other additional felonies.”
Scott said that officers were dispatched to the Pelosis’ home at approximately 2:27 a.m. to perform a wellbeing check. He said that DePape “violently assaulted” Paul Pelosi with a hammer, at which point officers “tackled and disarmed” him and performed medical aid. He added that both DePape and Paul Pelosi were taken to a local hospital for treatment.
Nancy Pelosi was in Washington D.C. with her protective detail at the time of the attack, according to a statement from the U.S. Capitol Police. USCP has joined the San Francisco police department and FBI in the investigation.
Reporting in multiple outlets suggests the assailant specifically targeted Pelosi’s home and shouted “Where is Nancy, where is Nancy?” when he confronted the speaker’s husband inside. The speaker’s office confirmed that he was “demanding to see the speaker.” At one point, the assailant attempted to tie Paul Pelosi up while they waited for Nancy Pelosi, CNN reported.
82-year-old Paul Pelosi is an investment banker who owns a venture capital firm based in San Francisco. The speaker’s office said that it expects him to make a full recovery.
DePape, the man police identified as the suspect, frequently posted right-wing and conspiratorial content on Facebook, CNN reported. He posted multiple videos produced by election denier and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, according to CNN.
The attack unfolds against a backdrop of right-wing threats to Democratic lawmakers in general, but specifically against Nancy Pelosi, a favored villain in those circles.
Pelosi was among those singled out as a target during the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, during which part of the mob of Trump insurrectionists went looking for the House speaker and ransacked her office.
Last year, a North Carolina man named Cleveland Grover Meredith Jr. was slapped with a 28-month prison sentence after traveling to D.C. with an assault rifle for the Trump rally that preceded the Capitol insurrection and texting a relative that he planned to put “a bullet in [Pelosi’s] noggin on Live TV.”
Political leaders have expressed outrage and concern over the incident.
President Joe Biden called Pelosi to “express his support after this horrible attack,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.
“The President continues to condemn all violence, and asks that the family’s desire for privacy be respected,” Jean-Pierre added.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) put out a statement denouncing the assault.
“What happened to Paul Pelosi was a dastardly act,” Schumer said. “I spoke with Speaker Pelosi earlier this morning and conveyed my deepest concern and heartfelt wishes to her husband and their family, and I wish him a speedy recovery.”