Immigration officials confirm alleged Pelosi attacker was in the U.S. illegally

Explanation

The man accused of attacking Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s husband with a hammer is a Canadian citizen who was in the United States illegally and faces deportation after his criminal charges are resolved, The Department of Homeland Security said Wednesday.

“US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) booked Canadian immigration detainee David DePape into the San Francisco County Jail on Nov. 1, following his arrest on Oct. 28,” DHS officials said in an email.

ICE, under Homeland Security, sends “detainers” to state and local law enforcement asking them to notify the agency before releasing a foreign national who may also expelled from the country. Deportations are civil cases that often occur after criminal cases are settled, but immigrants have also been arrested after posting bail.

DePape, 42, faces federal and state criminal charges in the vicious attack on Paul Pelosi, 82, early Friday morning, and terrorizing Nancy Pelosi. DePape has pleaded not guilty and remains in custody.

Relatives told the media that DePape grew up in British Columbia, a western Canadian province, but his journey to Northern California remains a mystery.

Government records show that DePape entered the United States legally on March 8, 2008, through Mexico. He crossed at the San Ysidro port of entry, which is the legal border that connects San Diego County to Tijuana.

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Canadians traveling for business or pleasure generally do not need visas, officials said, and he was admitted as a “temporary visitor,” visiting for pleasure, DHS said.

Canadians admitted for pleasure are usually allowed to stay for up to six months. DHS did not say exactly when DePape’s permission to stay in the United States expired.

Pelosi’s attacker told police he was ‘suicidal,’ court records say

The Canadian government confirmed this week that they are still working on DePape’s case.

Global Affairs Canada spokeswoman Charlotte MacLeod said: “Canadian authorities are in contact with local authorities to obtain more information.” “Due to confidential information, no further details can be released.”

California, home to millions of immigrants, is a safe haven and has passed laws restricting state and local law enforcement cooperation with immigration officials, discouraging immigration officials who want to deport immigrants. those arrested for crimes.

California has exceptions for people with serious criminal histories and it remains unclear how DePape’s case will play out. Federal prosecutors said he posed an extreme safety risk.

Federal authorities on Monday filed charges of attempted kidnapping and assault against DePape, alleging that she broke into Pelosi’s home, hit her husband with a hammer in front of police, and said he wanted breaking Nancy Pelosi’s knees as a warning to other Democrats.

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DePape was also indicted Tuesday in San Francisco County Superior Court on federal charges of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, residential burglary, false imprisonment and uttering threats. life or grievous bodily harm to a public official.

Court records show that DePape used a hammer to break into the House Speaker’s home in San Francisco early Friday and woke up her husband who was sleeping upstairs.

“Are you Paul Pelosi?” DePape allegedly said when he confronted Pelosi, court records show, standing over her with a hammer and zip ties. “Where’s Nancy?”

Paul Pelosi was able to call 911. But when officers arrived and told DePape to drop the hammer, he pulled back and hit Pelosi in the head, knocking him out.

Federal prosecutors called the attack “near fatal.”

Paul Pelosi underwent surgery to repair a “fractured skull and serious injuries to his right arm and hands,” according to a statement issued by Drew Hammill, Nancy Pelosi’s spokesman. A spokesperson said her husband is making a steady recovery.

DePape allegedly told police he was on a “suicide mission” and created a list of state and federal politicians in his bid to eliminate “disinformation” from Washington.

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DePape has also published hundreds of blog posts in recent months supporting far-rights and writing diatribes against Jews, Blacks, Democrats, the media and transgender people.

The defendant filled the blog with delusional thoughts in the days before Pelosi attacked

The attack added to growing concerns across the country about threats posed by domestic violence in the run-up to the Nov. 8 election. they are getting closer.

The FBI, DHS and other agencies issued a memo last week warning that excesses could increase within 90 days of the election, according to a copy of the document obtained by The Washington Post.

The memo said the biggest threat “is posed by lone criminals who use election-related issues to justify violence.”

Concerns about election-related violence prompted President Biden to make a speech in Washington on Wednesday night.

“We must, with one united voice, speak as a country and say there is no place, no room for election intimidation or political violence in America, whether it’s directed at Democrats or Republicans,” Biden said. . “There is no space, time. There is no room for ever.”

Holly Bailey, Aaron C. Davis and Dalton Bennett contributed to this report.

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