False Rumor Claims Paul Pelosi Brought Attacker Home from Gay Bar

The recent acquirer of Twitter allegedly assumed authority over the platform mere days before Elon Musk magnified the identical rumor in a tweet (which has subsequently been erased). That unfounded plot alleged that Pelosi had escorted the individual who assaulted him to their residence from a homosexual establishment. Law enforcement officials affirmed that the trespasser viciously attacked Paul Pelosi with a mallet, while solely her octogenarian spouse, Paul, was present at their San Francisco domicile on the morning of October 28, 2022, when an individual forcibly entered the residence of U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

There Was a Burglary

First, let’s establish some information. According to police statements, The Associated Press reported that the attacker forcibly entered the residence of Pelosi.

An intruder wielding a hammer smashed his way through a rear door into the Pelosi residence in San Francisco shortly before 2:30 a.m. Friday. The man confronted Paul Pelosi and shouted, “Where is Nancy,” according to a person familiar with the situation who was granted anonymity to discuss it.

Paul Pelosi called 911 himself and when police arrived they found him struggling with the assailant. The man managed to strike Pelosi at least once with the hammer before he was tackled by officers and arrested, police said.

Nancy Pelosi was in Washington at the time of the attack.

As per a representative for Ms. Pelosi, Paul Pelosi had a surgical procedure on the day of the assault “following a skull fracture and severe harm to his hands and right arm,” as stated by The New York Times.

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During a press briefing shortly after the attack, San Francisco Police Chief William Scott expressed his disapproval of the crime, stating, “This morning, everyone should feel disgusted by what happened. It is absolutely wrong, and families should not have to endure such harm. Our elected officials are here to serve the nation, states, counties, and cities, and they are committed to carrying out their duties. This was not a random act, but rather an intentional one. Our investigation is based on this fact.”

The assaulter, a 42-year-old person named David DePape, was arrested on suspicion of attempting to commit homicide, abusing the elderly, and trespassing a premises.

The Untrue ‘Male Escort’ Rumor

The Santa Monica Observer website published an article with a headline stating, “The Terrible Reality: Paul Pelosi Was Intoxicated Again, And In a Conflict With a Male Escort Early Friday Morning,” the day after the incident. Lacking proof, the article alleged that Pelosi had encountered DePape at a homosexual establishment and invited him to his residence.

He pleaded guilty later and was sentenced to three years of probation and five days in jail. The headline referred to Pelosi’s arrest in May 2022 for driving under the influence, once again highlighting her drunkenness.

DePape was alleged to be a “male escort,” once again without substantiation, in the article that purported to portray “the true events” according to the author’s “modest viewpoint.”

DePape, a resident of the San Francisco Bay Area for two decades, was locally known as a pro-nudity activist who had picketed naked at protests against laws mandating people to be dressed in public. The AP, reporting from Associated Press, also supported the claim that DePape was a former nudist protester in Castro.

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“On the day following the publication of the “humble opinion” piece by the Observer, an additional information was included at the start of the article, stating that victim Pelosi and suspect DePape were not acquainted before the attack. The San Francisco Police Department restated that the assault occurred after a burglary.”

Musk Removes Tweet that Spread Rumor

Musk, with a Twitter following of over 100 million, shared a link to the aforementioned article. The Observer appended a single-sentence update to their story, disclosing that it was contradicted by police reports, on the same day, two days after the incident.

According to Hillary Clinton’s tweet, Musk’s tweet endorsing the Observer’s article was a reaction. The AP pointed out that it was inaccurate to claim that Hillary Clinton passed away on September 11 and was substituted with a stand-in, as the same publication had previously claimed. The AP also highlighted that the same publication had previously made the false assertion that Hillary Clinton died on September 11 and was replaced with a body double.

Musk [replied] to a tweet by Hillary Clinton. Her tweet had criticized Republicans for generally spreading “hate and deranged conspiracy theories” and said, “It is shocking, but not surprising, that violence is the result.”

In response to Clinton’s tweet, Musk provided a link to the Santa Monica Observer article and added, “There is a tiny possibility there might be more to this story than meets the eye.”

The Los Angeles Times, the dominant news organization in the Southern California area where the Observer is located, has said the Observer is “notorious for fake news.”

Musk subsequently removed his tweet.

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‘Injure Her Knees Severely’

The assailant, according to federal authorities, broke into Nancy Pelosi’s residence seeking to break Nancy Pelosi’s kneecaps. The attack was reported by authorities who published new details about the incident in the following three days.

The man accused of attacking House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband with a hammer told police he wanted to hold the Democratic leader hostage and “break her kneecaps” to show other members of Congress there were “consequences for their actions,” authorities said Monday.

In a chilling federal complaint, officials say that David DePape, 42, carrying zip ties and tape in a backpack, broke into the couple’s San Francisco home early Friday morning, went upstairs where 82-year-old Paul Pelosi was sleeping, and demanded to talk to “Nancy.”

When a surprised Paul Pelosi told the intruder she was not there, DePape said he would wait — even after being told she would not be home for some days. The assailant then started taking out twist ties, to tie him up, the complaint says.

The federal filing stands in contrast to the mocking jokes and conspiracy theories about the Pelosi attack circulating by far-right figures and even some leading Republicans just a week before the hard-fought midterm elections. The San Francisco district attorney and police chief both said the attack was intentional.

As of this writing on Oct. 31, Paul Pelosi still remained in the hospital in San Francisco.

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