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Update: Police body camera footage of Paul Pelosi attack to be released Friday morning

Body-cam footage of Paul Pelosi attack response to be released
Body-cam footage of Paul Pelosi attack response to be released 01:54

SAN FRANCISCO  — The police body camera video showing the attack on former U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband at their San Francisco home last October will be released to the media on Friday morning, according to court officials.

A statement released by the San Francisco Superior Court said the video and audio in the case of the People vs. David DePape will be made "available to accredited media members" Friday morning at 9 a.m. in accordance with Judge Stephen M. Murphy's order Wednesday.

Update: Stunning SFPD bodycam video shows DePape's violent assault of Paul Pelosi

Media representatives will be able to pick up the CD's containing the footage and audio recordings from clerks at the Hall of Justice once the provide identification, a completed criminal records request form and a $25 payment.

David DePape (L) and Paul Pelosi are seen struggling over a hammer at Pelosi's residence in San Francisco, October 28, 2022. San Francisco Police Department

The footage of the attack on Paul Pelosi is being made public after San Francisco Superior Court Judge Stephen M. Murphy denied prosecutors' request to keep it secret.

Murphy ruled there was no reason to keep the footage secret, especially after prosecutors played it in open court during a preliminary hearing last month, according to Thomas R. Burke, a San Francisco-based lawyer who represented The Associated Press and a host of other news agencies including CBS News in their attempt to access the evidence.

Speaker Pelosi's husband assaulted with hammer inside home
The Federal Bureau of Investigation outside the San Francisco, California, home of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi following the violent attack on her husband, Paul Pelosi.  Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The San Francisco District Attorney's Office handed over the evidence to Murphy on Wednesday following a court hearing. 

Paul Pelosi, Nancy Pelosi's husband, was asleep at the couple's San Francisco home on Oct. 28 when someone broke in and beat him with a hammer. Prosecutors have charged 42-year-old David DePape in connection with the attack.


During a preliminary hearing last month, prosecutors played portions of Paul Pelosi's 911 call plus footage from Capitol police surveillance cameras, body cameras worn by the two police officers who arrived at the house, and video from DePape's interview with police.

But when news organizations asked for copies of that evidence, the San Francisco District Attorney's Office refused to release it. The attack, which occurred just days before the 2022 midterm elections, prompted intense speculation from the public that fueled the spread of false information.

The district attorney's office argued releasing the footage publicly would only allow people to manipulate it in their quest to spread false information.

Deputy Public Defender Adam Lipson, who is representing DePape, agreed. He issued a statement saying, "I opposed the release of the requested evidence because it could inhibit Mr. DePape's ability to get a fair trial, and could fuel conspiracy theories about the case."  

But the news agencies argued it was vital for prosecutors to publicly share their evidence that could debunk any false information swirling on the internet about the attack.

"You don't eliminate the public right of access just because of concerns about conspiracy theories," Burke said.

The San Francisco District Attorney's Office did not respond to an email from The Associated Press seeking comment.

"The body-worn camera footage was part of a preliminary hearing, which was in a public setting," explained attorney and former federal prosecutor Tony Brass ahead of the release. "So once it's in the public sphere, there's really no legitimate privacy interest or law enforcement privilege."  

The news agencies who sought the release of the footage includes The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Press Democrat, CNN, Fox News, ABC, NBC and KQED, an NPR-member radio station in San Francisco.

DePape pleaded not guilty last month to six charges, including attempted murder. Police have said DePape told them there was "evil in Washington" and he wanted to harm Nancy Pelosi because she was second in line to the presidency. His case is pending.

Democrats lost their majority in the House of Representatives after the midterm elections. Republicans elected California Republican U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy as the new speaker. Pelosi will remain in Congress, but she stepped down as Democratic leader. She was replaced by Hakeem Jeffries from New York.

Wilson Walker contributed to this story.

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