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SFPD chief on Paul Pelosi attack: ‘Everybody should be disgusted about what happened’

San Francisco Chief of Police Bill Scott (left) speaks to the media about the ongoing investigation regarding the home invasion and assault of Paul Pelosi, husband of Speaker Nancy Pelosi during a press conference at SFPD headquarters on Friday, Oct. 28, 2022. Paul Pelosi was assaulted in the family’s home on the 2600 block of Broadway in the Pacific Heights neighborhood earlier in the day. Speaker Pelosi was not at home at the time of the incident. | Benjamin Fanjoy/The Standard

A visibly angered San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said at a Friday evening press conference on the attack on Nancy Pelosi’s husband that “everybody should be disgusted about what happened.”

The speaker’s husband, Paul Pelosi, was struck “at least once” and that it was “not a random attack.”

Police identified the suspect as 42-year-old David DePape, a Berkeley resident. He has been taken into custody and will be charged with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and elder abuse, among other charges, according to the district attorney.

Scott said that Paul Pelosi called 911 after 2 a.m. Friday, the answering dispatcher, Heather Grives, noticed something was wrong during the call. 

“She knew something more was going on,” Scott said. “What he said, she felt there was more to it.” 

That hunch prompted Grives to prioritize the call so that police would arrive more quickly, Scott said.

Scott added that DePape appears to have forced his way into the home through a rear door. 

When officers Kyle Cagney, Kolby Wilmes and Sgt. Edmond Huang arrived at the door of the Pacific Heights home, they knocked on the door. 

When the door was opened, officers saw Mr. Pelosi and DePape, each with one hand on a single hammer.

The officers told both men to drop the hammer, but DePape got hold of the hammer and “violently attacked” Mr. Pelosi, Scott said. 

The officers tackled the suspect, disarmed him and then requested backup and medical aid.

Mr. Pelosi was taken to the hospital, as was DePape, who has since been booked on attempted murder along with a number of other charges. 

DePape has been associated with a nudist activist group that has repeatedly held events in San Francisco. 

Scott said that while the investigation is ongoing, his department has issued a number of search warrants.