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The man who was charged with assaulting the husband of former Democratic Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi last year has been convicted in a US federal court.
A jury in San Francisco returned the verdict on Thursday against David DePape, who was charged last year with assaulting Paul Pelosi after entering his San Francisco residence in the middle of the night, and with attempting to kidnap a US official.
He was found guilty on both counts and faces up to life in prison when he is sentenced at a later date, prosecutors said.
DePape last year told authorities he was planning to hold then-Speaker Pelosi — whom he described as the “leader of the pack” of lies told by the Democratic party — hostage to question her, according to an FBI agent’s affidavit. DePape said that had she lied, he planned to break “her kneecaps”.
DePape entered the Pelosi house by breaking a glass door with a hammer. He carried tools including rope, tape as well as rubber and cloth gloves, authorities said at the time.
DePape and Pelosi were taken to hospital after the attack, where Pelosi underwent surgery aimed at repairing a skull fracture and significant injuries on his hands and arm. Nancy Pelosi was in Washington at the time.
Lawyers representing DePape did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
A spokesperson for Nancy Pelosi said in a statement after the verdict that the former Speaker and her family were “deeply grateful for the outpouring of prayers and warm wishes for” her husband, who “continues to make progress in his recovery”.
He “demonstrated extraordinary composure and courage on the night of the attack a year ago and in the courtroom this week”, the spokesperson added.
The attack raised concerns about the safety of lawmakers leading up to the 2022 midterm elections and increased the focus on the risks stemming from aggressive political rhetoric.
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