Paul Pelosi attacker trafficks in conspiracy theories in call to TV station after video release | CNN Politics
The man who attacked the husband of Nancy Pelosi in their home last year showed no remorse and continued his dangerous fixation on the former House speaker in a bizarre phone call to a San Francisco reporter on Friday, according to the Bay Area station’s reporting.
David DePape called KTVU’s Amber Lee from the San Francisco County Jail on the same day the attack footage was released, with what he called “an important message for everyone in America.”
Without mentioning Pelosi by name, DePape said he had gathered “names and addresses” of people he believed were “systematically and deliberately” destroying American freedom and liberty and said he wanted to “have a heart-to-heart chat about their bad behavior.”
DePape added that he should have been “better prepared,” adding that he was sorry that he “didn’t get more of them.”
KTVU said their reporter was not allowed to ask follow-up questions of DePape during the phone conversation, which he allowed to be recorded.
The call came on the same day that a California court released video of the attack, audio of the 911 call and his initial police interview after the arrest in which he echoed right-wing extremist views, including MAGA tropes that underscored how he was influenced by dangerous rhetoric and conspiracies.
DePape also told a San Francisco police officer in October that the reason he went to the Pelosis’ San Francisco home was because he believed that the then-speaker was “the leader of the pack” of all the politicians in Washington, DC, “lying on a consistent basis.”
In laying out his reasons for enacting the attack, DePape epitomizes how dangerous unsubstantiated political rhetoric that enters the mainstream has contributed to political violence nationwide.
US Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger said earlier this month that threats against members of Congress is “still too high” even though threat investigations dropped in 2022 for the first time in five years. Federal law enforcement agencies have consistently warned about the increasing threat of politically motivated violence after rioters attacked the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, raising specific concerns about the likelihood that online calls for violence result in real-world attacks.
DePape claimed in his October interview that Democrats, led by Pelosi, spied on former President Donald Trump in a way that was worse than Watergate, when then-President Richard Nixon was forced to resign after it was discovered his administration tried to cover up a break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters.
‘Like something from a Stephen King novel’: Analyst describes Pelosi attack
“When Trump came into office, what they did went so far beyond spying on a rival campaign. It is just crazy,” DePape said in an audio recording of his interview with a San Francisco police officer in October.
Without evidence, DePape claimed that Democrats were on an “endless f**king crime spree” when it came to Trump.
“Not only were they spying on a rival campaign, they were submitting fake evidence to spy on a rival campaign, covering it up, persecuting the rival campaign,” DePape said of what he believed Democrats were doing to Trump.
DePape said that these actions originated with Hillary Clinton, who unsuccessfully ran against Trump in 2016, and that all Democrats are “criminals.” But he zeroed in on Pelosi as the one who “ran with the lying.”
DePape is facing both state and federal charges related to the attack. He has pleaded not guilty.
The video and audio were released by a court Friday, over the objections of DePape’s attorneys who argued it would “irreparably damage” his right to a fair trial. Media outlets, including CNN, pressed the court to release the information.