Paul Pelosi Body-Cam Footage Largely Vindicates NBC News Reporter Suspended for Retracted Report

Miguel Almaguer went back to work weeks ago at the network, which declined comment Friday to TheWrap

NBC News reporter Miguel Almaguer
NBC News reporter Miguel Almaguer (TodayNBC News screenshot)

Body-cam footage from the late-night attack on Paul Pelosi released Friday largely corroborated the early November reporting of correspondent Miguel Almaguer, who had his story retracted and was briefly suspended. But it doesn’t appear he’ll be getting any sort of public apology from the network.

In the days after the husband of then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was attacked, with details scant, police video under seal and conspiracy theories running rampant, Almaguer reported that arriving San Francisco police were unaware they were approaching the Speaker’s residence; that Paul Pelosi seemed at first “unalarmed” after opening the door; and that he stepped back “several feet” into the residence before he was struck with a hammer.

With the possible exception of the “step-back” descriptor – which video shows didn’t happen until the attack commenced, as it appears Pelosi has a self-opening door – the bodycam footage released Friday vindicates the entirety of Almaguer’s report – including detailed dialogue between Pelosi, police, and suspect David DePape.

Contacted Friday by TheWrap, a representative for NBC News did not acknowledge questions about whether the original story’s reporting or editor’s note would be updated, or if there would be recompense or a public acknowledgement for Almaguer.

In lieu of comment, NBC News referred TheWrap to the note originally published with the retracted story: “Editor’s note: This piece has been removed from publication because it did not meet NBC News reporting standards.”

Which, to be fair, may have been very much true at the time.

Almaguer’s original reporting did not indicate that he, or anyone at NBC News, had seen the footage; though it did at one point cite “court documents,” the report did not specify whether those documents had been obtained by NBC, or if its details from court records were being relayed second-hand.

After the story was pulled in November, a person with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap: “The decision was made to remove the segment after it was determined, shortly after it aired, that the main source for the information was unreliable regarding the question of the circumstances that the police encountered when they arrived at the house, specifically what the police saw and how far the attacker was from the door.”

Almaguer was suspended and not seen on-air for the rest of the month, then appeared again on Dec. 12 for a “Today” segment about the weather. The longtime “Today Show” and NBC News correspondent did not respond to messages sent via social media Friday, and has not posted to his official Twitter account since Thursday.