B.C. man who attacked Nancy Pelosi’s husband with hammer begins state trial

B.C. man who attacked Nancy Pelosi’s husband with hammer begins state trial
San Francisco Police Department via AP, File
FILE - In this image taken from San Francisco Police Department body-camera video, the husband of former U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Paul Pelosi, right, fights for control of a hammer with his assailant David DePape during a brutal attack in the couple's San Francisco home, on Oct. 28, 2022.

The B.C. man convicted of attempting to kidnap then-U.S. Speaker Nancy Pelosi in 2022, as well as assaulting her husband with a hammer at their home, is now facing a state trial for the crimes.

David DePape, who was raised in Powell River, B.C. just east of Courtenay, broke into the Pelosis home on Oct. 28, 2022, and attacked Paul Pelosi, 82, with a hammer, causing serious injuries.

He was convicted of assault and attempted kidnapping of a federal official in November 2023, and was sentenced to 30 years in jail for the crimes by a federal judge earlier this month.

Now, the state case against him has begun, with the San Francisco District Attorney charging DePape with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, residential burglary, false imprisonment, threatening the life or serious bodily harm to a public official, and threatening the staff or family of a public official.

DePape pleaded not guilty.

Opening statements are set to begin Wednesday, a day after DePape’s federal sentencing was reopened to allow him to speak.

District Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley did not allow DePape to address the court before being sentenced and corrected her error by reopening that portion of the trial on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, the judge apologized to DePape, 44, and to attorneys for her error and asked if he wished to address the court.

DePape, wearing an orange shirt and orange pants with his hair in a short ponytail, said yes and proceeded to speak quickly off of a piece of paper.

“I’m sorry for what I did,” he said, adding that he felt horrible and never meant to hurt Pelosi and that he should have left the house when he realized the former speaker was not there.

DePape lived in Powell River for more than two decades before moving to California roughly 20 years ago. Some of his family remains in the B.C. city.

Angela Chuang, one of his attorneys, had previously told the court that DePape was estranged from his family and was caught up in conspiracy theories.

Chuang said during his sentencing that DePape was first exposed to extreme beliefs by Gypsy Taub, his ex-girlfriend and mother of his children. Taub and their two children attended every hearing in the federal case.

Taub, a well-known pro-nudity activist in the San Francisco Bay Area, met DePape in Hawaii when he was 20 years old and she was in her 30s and pregnant, DePape’s twin sister, Joanne Robinson, said in a letter to the judge seeking leniency.

Robinson wrote that Taub isolated DePape from his family and inflicted “extreme psychological damage” on her brother.

The Associated PressThe Associated Press
Adam ChanAdam Chan

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