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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Amelia Neath and Gustaf Kilander

Ex of suspect in Paul Pelosi hammer attack thrown out of court over bathroom graffiti ‘interference’


A pro-nudist campaigner, whose former partner is charged with attacking ex-speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband with a hammer, has been expelled from court after allegedly trying to tamper with the jury in his trial.

Gypsy Taub, the former partner of defendant David DePape, was barred from entering the public gallery and the second floor of the San Fransisco courthouse where DePape’s state trial was coming to an end, according to the Associated Press.

DePape, 44, was convicted last month and sentenced to 30 years in prison after being found guilty of attempted kidnapping of a federal official and assault on the immediate family member of a federal official.

Prosecutors found that DePape had attacked Pelosi’s husband, Paul Pelosi, who was 82 at the time, with the hammer after he broke into their San Fransisco home in October 2022.

Following his conviction in the federal trial, DePape is now undergoing a state trial stemming from the break-in.

The action to throw Taub out came after the judge said she was trying to tamper with the jury. On Monday and Tuesday, Taub, who is a high-profile pro-nudist activist in the Bay Area, was reportedly handing out pieces of paper with a website address on them.

Gypsy Taub, who has two children with David DePape, pictured outside his federal trial in November (AP)

This website, which Taub runs, promotes conspiracy theories. The same website address was then also discovered on Tuesday graffitied in a women’s bathroom near the courtroom.

The website reportedly includes false conspiracies about the trial, ABC7 reports.

“You have been trying to corruptly influence one or more jury members,” San Francisco Superior Court judge Harry Dorfman said before he asked two bailiffs to escort Taub out of the courtroom.

The judge barred her from the court before DePape’s attorney, Adam Lipson, then proceeded to present his closing arguments to the jury.

He claimed that DePape had been living a solitary life and had gone “down the rabbit hole of propaganda and conspiracy theories” at the time he had broken into the Pelosi’s home under two years ago.

DePape was convicted of attempting to kidnap Nancy Pelosi and attacking her husband with a hammer (AP)

DePape faces charges of attempting to sway a witness, false imprisonment, residential burglary, threatening a family member of a public official, and aggravated kidnapping.

Lipson is arguing that while his client was guilty of three of the charges, he claimed that prosecutors had not presented enough evidence to convict him of threatening a family member of a public official or aggravated kidnapping.

The attorney argued against the kidnapping charge by telling the jury that prosecutors did not prove DePape kidnapped Paul Pelosi with the intent “to exact from another person money or something valuable”, the AP reported.

Prosecutors have said that the thing DePape wanted from the alleged kidnapping was to create a video of Nancy Pelosi confessing to crimes he believed she had committed, but Lipson argued that the video did not exist and even if it did, it would not have had value.

“When he broke into the Pelosis’ home, his intent was to confront and potentially hurt and assault Nancy Pelosi. That was his intent at that time; that has nothing to do with Mr Pelosi,” he argued.

However, assistant district attorney Phoebe Maffei argued against this, saying that DePape actually told a detective he planned to get a crime-confessing video of Nancy Pelosi and post it on the internet, the outlet said.

Paul and Nancy Pelosi attend the Vanity Fair Oscar party in Beverly Hills in March (Getty)

“There is inherent value in a video of the speaker of the House confessing to crimes in her own home,” Maffei rebutted.

DePape eventually testified in the federal trial that he decided to go after Nancy Pelosi as a means of getting her to admit alleged lies and corruption. He told the jury his plan was not to kidnap her but to interrogate her on camera in a unicorn costume.

He also admitted he broke into the Pelosis’ San Francisco home around 2am on October 28, 2022, and that he was set to take the then-speaker hostage and “break her kneecaps” if she lied to him. He also admitted to striking Paul Pelosi with a hammer after police appeared at the residence. He said his plan to put a stop to what he saw as government corruption was coming apart.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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