In the latest development regarding the October attack on the 82-year-old husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), accused assailant David DePape was indicted by a federal grand jury Wednesday, as NBC News reports.
The 42-year-old San Francisco-area man will now face a pair of charges at the federal level in addition to a series of state charges that were lodged against him shortly after his arrest last month and to which he has already pleaded not guilty.
A press release issued by the Justice Department detailed the allegations against DePape, who is said to have entered the Pelosis’ San Francisco home in the early morning hours of Oct. 28.
According to the release, Mr. Pelosi awoke to find DePape in his bedroom looking for the House speaker, who was out of town at the time.
Paul Pelosi was ultimately able to place a call to 911, which brought responding officers to the scene, where they arrived to find the speaker’s husband and DePape engaged in a physical struggle over a hammer.
DePape won control of the tool and began swinging it at Pelosi, eventually making contact with his head and causing serious injuries that included a fractured skull.
Once officers were able to restrain DePape, they discovered in his possession a rope, a roll of tape, another hammer, zip ties, and gloves, according to the federal indictment documents.
Decades in prison possible
As it now stands, DePape is facing one count of assault on an immediate family member of a U.S. official with intent to retaliate against that official on account of their performance of official duties. He also faces a single count of attempted kidnapping of a U.S. official on account of their performance of official duties.
Conviction on the assault charge could bring upwards of 30 years imprisonment, and a finding of guilty on the attempting kidnapping charge could yield up to 20 years.
DePape’s legal jeopardy on the federal level comes on top of the potential penalties brought by the numerous California state charges previously filed, including attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, residential burglary, elder abuse, threats to a public official and their family, and false imprisonment of an elder, as ABC News noted.
Finding the truth
While any attack such as the one sustained by Mr. Pelosi is an undeniably terrible thing, the manner in which this scenario has been covered by the mainstream media has left many with more questions than answers. A recent decision by NBC News to quickly pull a report that seemed to cast doubts on the official narrative of what took place has only deepened suspicions of a potential cover-up.
Hopefully, the legal processes that are now underway will not only result in full justice for all involved, but will also shed greater light for members of the public on what has thus far been a legitimately newsworthy story shrouded in an unnecessary level of secrecy.