Oct 29, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Suspect in Pelosi attack's online activity: What we know

home of U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is seen on October 28, 2022 in San Francisco, California.

The home of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is seen in California. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The man accused of breaking into House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s home and attacking her husband allegedly made racist remarks and rambled about QAnon conspiracy theories online.

Catch up quick: The suspect, 42-year-old David DePape, will be charged with multiple felonies after allegedly attacking Paul Pelosi with a hammer, Axios reports. He was looking for Nancy Pelosi when entering the home, a source briefed on the attack told Axios.

  • Paul Pelosi's doctors expect him to make a "full recovery," spokesperson Drew Hammill said in a statement Friday.

What they're saying: DePape’s daughter, Inti Gonzalez, told the Los Angeles Times that the suspect had a personal blog in which he posted QAnon theories and suggested that Russia's invasion of Ukraine was "a ploy for Jewish people to buy land."

  • “I’m a little shocked,” she told the L.A. Times, “but not really that shocked, in all honesty.”
  • Three of DePape’s relatives confirmed to CNN that DePape's Facebook account, which has since been taken down, included videos from My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell claiming the 2020 election was stolen.

Details: According to the Associated Press, DePape's name is listed on two web blogs that "contained rants" about everything from aliens and communists to technology and "global elites."

  • AP reports that one of the blogs, titled "Q," had a collection of memes that included the deceased Jeffrey Epstein and made references to QAnon.
  • In a separate post called “Gun Rights,” the poster allegedly wrote that "basic human rights hinder Big Brothers [sic] ability to enslave and control you in a complete and totalizing way," according to AP.
  • Someone posting with the name David DePape on another website also ranted about COVID vaccines, face masks and climate change while also sharing "an illustration of a zombified Hillary Clinton dining on human flesh," AP reports.
  • According to the AP, other posts under DePape's name supported former President Trump and Ye, the rapper formally known as Kanye West, who has shared several antisemitic messages in recent weeks.

Worth noting: Axios could not independently verify if the suspect posted these messages. While the alleged accounts do belong to someone with the suspect's name, accounts can be faked or belong to someone who shares the same name.

Zoom out: Online radicalization has played a role in violent attacks and their aftermath, Axios reports.

  • Many shootings and acts of violence have shown connections to online dark subcultures, which will then thrive off violence and nihilism associated with the attacks, NPR reports.

Go deeper: Pelosi attack stokes Congress' fears: "Somebody is going to die"

Go deeper