Those hoping to see the mugshot of David DePape, 42, who allegedly violently attacked Paul Pelosi with a hammer at the San Francisco residence of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, will have to wait.
Email requests from The Epoch Times for DePape’s mugshot, sent to both the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) and the San Francisco County Sheriff’s Office, were denied, the outlet reported Saturday.
The outlet received two very different responses from both law enforcement agencies as to why they couldn’t or wouldn’t release the images.
— KTVU (@KTVU) October 28, 2022
The San Francisco County Sheriff’s Office, where DePape is currently being detained, responded in an email to The Epoch Times, “We do not own the rights to mugshots.”
The city’s police department, in its denial, said that it wouldn’t release the mugshot given the “current circumstances,” though no further explanation was provided. “Under the current circumstances we do not release mugshots of the suspect,” Officer Nicole Pacchetti’s email to The Epoch Times read.
Pacchetti might have been referencing a standing policy issued in 2020 by San Francisco Police Chief William Scott, who said at the time that mugshots of suspects would only be released if “their release is necessary to warn the public of imminent danger or to enlist the public’s assistance in locating individuals, including at-risk persons.”
According to a statement from SFPD at the time, Scott cited research that concluded releasing a mugshot fostered racism and bias.
“This policy emerges from compelling research suggesting that the widespread publication of police booking photos in the news and on social media creates an illusory correlation for viewers that fosters racial bias and vastly overstates the propensity of black and brown men to engage in criminal behavior.”
The statement added, “By implementing this groundbreaking new policy today, SFPD is taking a stand that walks the walk on implicit bias while affirming a core principle of procedural justice — that those booked on suspicion of a crime are nonetheless presumed innocent of it.”
DePape is caucasian, but the release of his mugshot still fell under the limits of the 2020 policy, if that’s why SFPD chose not to share it with The Epoch Times or any other outlet at this time.
It was also noted in SFPD’s statement that San Francisco, as far as what was known at the time, was the first city in America to implement such a policy.
In addition to DePape’s mugshot, The Epoch Times noted that several other “commonly released records” requests have also been denied, including the actual 911 audio allegedly made by Paul Pelosi and the bodycam footage reportedly captured by the responding SFPD officers.
According to the Washington Examiner, San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer during an interview on Thursday that such requests won’t be honored at the current time while adding that unspecified members of the Pelosi family were provided access to bodycam footage.
“For us, revealing that evidence through the media is just not what we think is appropriate. We want to make sure that this individual is held accountable for these egregious acts. For us, we’re going to make sure that we limit the evidence as much as possible in order to get that done,” Jenkins told Blitzer, who had asked if the “public interest” in the case warranted the release of the footage.
According to USA Today, DePape will face his first preliminary hearing on Dec. 14. He’s currently being held without bail.
Some of the state charges DePape faces include elder abuse, burglary and attempted murder. Federal charges against DePape include “assault on a family member of a federal official and attempted kidnapping of a federal official,” USA Today added.
DePape pleaded “not guilty” to all of the state charges. No federal arraignment date has been announced.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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