The hard-plastic zip ties, used as hand or ankle cuffs to restrain people, indicate the seriousness of the planned attack on Paul Pelosi after the pre-dawn break-in at the couple’s San Francisco home last Friday.
They are also chillingly reminiscent of last year’s attack on the U.S. Capitol by Donald Trump supporters, many of whom had zip ties, presumably to restrain lawmakers who would not arbitrarily switch electoral votes to defeated candidate Trump. The FBI suspected some rioters may have planned to use the zip ties to take hostages that day.
The zip ties were spotted on film and in photos of many Capitol rioters captured on surveillance cameras.
Some observers view the attack on Pelosi as a continuation of the Jan. 6 riot.
Suspect David DePape — a QAnon conspiracy theorist and defender of Trump — also insistently demanded of Paul Pelosi during the attack: “Where is Nancy? Where is Nancy?” His words recalled the same words of a rioter as he searched for the speaker inside the Capitol during the insurrection.
President Joe Biden highlighted that similarity in an impassioned speech against political violence at a Philadelphia fundraiser last Friday. He said the “same chant” — where is Nancy? — that “was used on Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol. This is despicable,” he added. “There’s too much violence, political violence, too much hatred, too much vitriol.”
National security analyst Juliette Kayyem told Jim Acosta on CNN Sunday that DePape’s zip ties were “reminiscent” of the Capitol attack and that the suspect “mimicked” the violence. He was seeking Nancy Pelosi, apparently to cause “grave bodily harm if not death,” she added.
She suspects DePape was “radicalized” by the Jan. 6 violence that continues to be supported and even hailed by Trump. The former president vowed just last month to consider “full pardons” for Jan. 6 rioters if he’s elected to the White House again.
“When you hold up domestic terrorists like those that participated in Jan. 6 as heroes … you are sending the message loud and clear that violence is what you want — that trial by combat is what you want,” former Republican official Kurt Bardella warned Friday on MSNBC’s “The Beat.”
DePape will be charged Monday in San Francisco Superior Court, said a statement from the office of San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins. He’s expected to be charged with a series of felonies, including attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, burglary and elder abuse.
DePape is currently being held in a local hospital, though officials have not explained why, KRON-4 TV reported. He’s in the custody of the San Francisco Police Department and is being held without bail.