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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke November 1, 2022

Police dispatch audio in Pelosi attack was in San Francisco, not Moscow

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  • This claim is unfounded. The 911 call from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband was placed in San Francisco and fielded by an emergency dispatcher there. 

Authorities have praised the emergency dispatcher who fielded Paul Pelosi’s 911 call on Oct. 28 after an attacker broke into the San Francisco residence he shares with his wife, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. 

News organizations have published police radio chatter that followed that call, and at least one Instagram post is making unfounded claims that the audio originated in Russia. 

Sharing a screenshot of what looks like a headline that said "Police dispatch audio: Paul Pelosi when calling cops said ‘he doesn’t know who the male is but advised that his name is David and he is a friend,’" the Oct. 29 post said: "Russian disinformation. Classic signs. They did the audio in a studio on Moscow." 

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)

The headline accurately captures what was relayed in the audio recording of a San Francisco dispatcher, though it doesn’t make clear that David DePape, the man accused of attacking Pelosi, "advised that his name is David and that he is a friend." Pelosi wasn’t saying that DePape was a friend. 

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Pelosi’s call "enabled the dispatcher, at 2:32 a.m. Friday, to elevate the call to an emergency, according to officials and police audio dispatches," the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Two minutes later, two police officers arrived at the residence and tackled the man identified as DePape "moments after he allegedly struck Paul Pelosi with a hammer." 

In an Oct. 28 Facebook post, the San Francisco Police Department wrote that the police chief wanted to thank the officers and emergency dispatcher "for their swift action."  

The federal criminal complaint against DePape details the 911 call San Francisco dispatch received from Pelosi, who was "located at the Pelosi residence in San Francisco, California." 

There is no evidence to support the claim that the call or police dispatch audio were recorded in a studio in Moscow. 

We rate that claim Pants on Fire!

Our Sources

Instagram post, Oct. 29, 2022

Criminal Complaint against David DePape, Oct. 31, 2022

San Francisco Chronicle, Paul Pelosi’s secret 911 call — and an alert S.F. dispatcher — may have saved his life, Oct. 29, 2022

San Francisco Chronicle, Elon Musk tweet promotes baseless anti-LGBTQ conspiracy theory about Paul Pelosi attack, Oct. 30, 2022

TMZ, Paul Pelosi survived hammer attack... Thanks to his secret 911 call, Oct. 29, 2022

San Francisco Police Department Facebook post, Oct. 28, 2022

Independent, Dispatch call reveals how Paul Pelosi secretly alerted authorities to attack, Oct. 30, 2022

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Police dispatch audio in Pelosi attack was in San Francisco, not Moscow

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