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Chief Judge Orders Release of Video Showing Assault on Paul Pelosi

There was no reason to keep the footage secret, Judge Stephen M. Murphy of San Francisco Superior Court ruled. It could be released as soon as Thursday.

A judge in San Francisco ruled on Wednesday that footage of a home intruder’s attack on Paul Pelosi, the husband of former Speaker Nancy Pelosi, could be released publicly over the objections of prosecutors.

The decision was made in Superior Court by Judge Stephen M. Murphy, said Thomas R. Burke, a lawyer representing a group of news organizations, including The New York Times, that pushed for the evidence to be released.

The footage includes video captured by Capitol Police surveillance cameras and body cameras worn by the two police officers who responded to the attack on Mr. Pelosi, 82, at the Pelosis’ house in San Francisco in the early hours of Oct. 28.

Federal prosecutors have charged David DePape, 42, with several crimes in the attack, including attempted murder. He has pleaded not guilty.

The attack, which occurred on the cusp of the 2022 midterm elections, fueled wild rumors and misinformation on social media about the circumstances. In arguing to keep the footage secret, the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office said publicizing the videos would only fuel more distortions of the facts and harm Mr. DePape’s right to a fair trial.

But Judge Murphy pointed out that the footage had already been aired at a preliminary court hearing last month, said Mr. Burke, who was in the courtroom when the judge gave his decision from the bench.

Judge Murphy ordered that the footage be turned over to the court clerk’s office, and it could become available as soon as Thursday.

The police say Mr. DePape broke into the Pelosi residence and bludgeoned Mr. Pelosi with a hammer, leaving him in a pool of blood. The police say Mr. DePape was motivated by a desire to take Ms. Pelosi as a hostage and interrogate her. She was in Washington at the time.

In addition to The Times, the news agencies that sought the release of the footage were The Associated Press, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Press Democrat of Santa Rosa in California, Fox News, CBS, ABC, NBC and KQED of San Francisco.

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