Having overstayed his visa more than 20 years ago, the Canadian man accused of breaking into House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco home and hitting her husband with a hammer should have been noticed by immigration officials, a federal official said Thursday.
According to a U.S. official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the situation, David DePape, 42, legitimately entered the nation in 2000, left, and then came back a few times, notably in March 2008 at the San Ysidro border crossing in San Diego.
Most Canadians can enter the United States as tourists without a visa and remain for up to six months.
The representative said it was unclear why DePape was allowed into the country despite exceeding his visa limits in 2000.
When questioned about DePape’s admission into the country after breaking immigration law, the Department of Homeland Security did not answer immediately.
It admitted in a statement that on March 8, 2008, DePape was permitted entry into San Diego from Tijuana, but it did not mention any additional entries.
DePape allegedly confronted Paul Pelosi on October 28 and wanted to know where the House Speaker was in the family’s Pacific Heights residence, according to San Francisco police.
DePape was ordered jailed without bail after entering a not-guilty plea to the state’s accusations on Tuesday.
Adam Lipson, his public defender, expressed excitement about giving him a “vigorous legal defense.”
State prosecutors have accused DePape of attempted murder, burglary, and elder abuse.
He is also charged federally with the attempted kidnapping of a representative of the United States.
Although the defendant won’t be present in court, his state case will continue on Friday. There is no planned arraignment date for the federal charges.