scorecardPaul Pelosi was unconscious in a pool of his own blood for 3 minutes following hammer attack
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Paul Pelosi was unconscious in a pool of his own blood for 3 minutes following hammer attack

Tom Dotan,Azmi Haroun   

Paul Pelosi was unconscious in a pool of his own blood for 3 minutes following hammer attack
PoliticsPolitics3 min read
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 07: Nancy Pelosi and Paul Pelosi walk the red carpet during the 27th Annual Kennedy Center Honors at John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on December 7, 2014 in Washington, DC.    Kris Connor/Getty Images
  • The man accused of attacking Paul Pelosi with a hammer was arraigned on Tuesday.
  • He pleaded not guilty to a litany of state charges, including attempted murder and kidnapping.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband Paul Pelosi lay unconscious in a pool of his own blood for three minutes after an attacker struck him in the head with a hammer at full force during a break-in last week.

According to new details from San Francisco's District Attorney Brooke Jenkins, the suspect hit Pelosi with the hammer in front of police officers after Pelosi failed to grab the hammer away from him.

The suspect, David DePape, pleaded not guilty to several state charges including attempted murder and attempted kidnapping at a Tuesday arraignment, and he faces two felony charges from the US Justice Department as well.

"What's clear is this case is vulnerable to misinformation," Jenkins said outside the San Francisco Superior Court. "This was not a random act of violence and this was not a random residential burglary–he sought to come and harm the speaker of the house of the United States."

On Tuesday, the San Francisco DA's office asked Judge Diane Northway to detain DePape until future hearings.

Northway also signed a protective order disallowing DePape from coming within 150 yards of Nancy or Paul Pelosi, or contacting them.

In a court filing, the DA offered a new insight into the incident that happened in the early hours of Friday, October 28. Prosecutors described the graphic scene that police witnessed when opening Pelosi's door.

Prosecutors wrote in the court filing that after police reached the residence, Pelosi walked with the attacker to the first floor of his house and was able to open the door for them. The two struggled over the hammer in front of the officers at the doorway before the suspect bludgeoned him, the filing said.

"One officer ordered, 'Drop the hammer!'" the filing said. "But Mr. Pelosi could not maintain his grip on the hammer. A second later, Defendant wrenched the hammer away from Mr. Pelosi, immediately stepped back, and lunged at Mr. Pelosi, striking Mr. Pelosi in the head at full force with the hammer, which knocked Mr. Pelosi unconscious."

The filing added that Pelosi passed out briefly and started to bleed from his head before medical help arrived.

"The officers rushed into the house, tackled Defendant, and disarmed him," prosecutors wrote. "Mr. Pelosi remained unresponsive for about three minutes, waking up in a pool of his own blood."

Paul Pelosi underwent surgery at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital to repair "a skull fracture and serious injuries to his right arm and hands," Speaker Pelosi's office said in a statement last week.

If convicted on the state attempted kidnapping charge, DePape could serve up to 20 years in prison and could serve life in prison if convicted on all state charges.

His public defender has denied all allegations against him.

Authorities claim that DePape broke into Pelosi's San Francisco home last week looking for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who was in Washington, DC, at the time of the attack. Prosecutors added that DePape opened up to police after he was detained without any questioning.

"Defendant told officers and medics at the scene, 'I'm sick of the insane fucking level of lies coming out of Washington, DC, I came here to have a little chat with his wife,'" according to the filing. "Defendant added: 'I didn't really want to hurt him, but you know this was a suicide mission. I'm not going to stand here and do nothing even if it costs me my life. Hurting him was not my goal. I told him before I attacked him, that he's escalating things, and I will go through him if I have to.'"

DePape also previously espoused conspiratorial views, believing that COVID-19 was a plan hatched by the global elite, following QAnon and pushing 2020 election lies.

At the Tuesday press conference, Jenkins made it clear that she'd push for him to stay detained through proceedings, calling him "dangerous."

"I consider him dangerous," Jenkins said at the press conference. "This is not representative of the state or safety of San Francisco, it's more representative of the state of politics in the United States."