A California doctor has been sentenced to two months in prison for being involved in the Jan. 6 breach of the Capitol and stepping inside the restricted premises along with her co-defendant John Strand.
Dr. Simone Melissa Gold was initially charged with entering a restricted building or grounds, violent entry, and disorderly conduct, and arrested on Jan. 18, 2021. She spent two days in custody. On March 3, 2022, she pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge of illegally entering the restricted building. Gold was sentenced June 16 to serve 60 days in jail, one year of supervised release, pay a $9,500 fine, and $500 restitution.
Gold is the founder of America’s Frontline Doctors (AFLDS), a nonprofit that has spoken out against the emergency use authorization of COVID-19 vaccines and promoted the use of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine during the initial days of the pandemic.
While inside the building, Gold delivered a speech through a megaphone to a crowd gathered in Statuary Hall, where she stated her opposition to the COVID-19 vaccine mandates and government-imposed lockdowns.
Gold expressed regret for entry into the Capitol building in a Jan. 12 interview with The Washington Post. “During the same interview Strand stated that he was also inside the U.S. Capitol with Gold and was there to protect Gold,” according to an official statement.
“I was misguided. I should not have entered,” Gold said. “Everything I did on January 6, misguided or not, was consistent with my effort to do my best for people.” She sounded emotional when she told Cooper that she was “shocked” the prosecutors believed she was not remorseful and did not intend to take part “in a situation that was so destructive to our nation.”
Strand—the communication director at AFLDS and Gold’s boyfriend—has been charged along with Gold. He has pleaded not guilty and rejected an offer for a plea agreement. Strand’s trial is scheduled for July 18.
Regarding Gold’s sentencing, an AFLDS press release on Thursday said, “Like most January 6 defendants, she is a victim of selective prosecution—the defining feature of corrupted governments.”
The Epoch Times has reached out to AFLDS for comment.
However, district Judge Christopher Cooper, a Barack Obama appointee, said that AFLDS was “leaving people with the misimpression that this is a political prosecution or that it’s about free speech,” as he delivered the sentence.
“January 6 was about a lot of things, but it wasn’t about the First Amendment or COVID vaccinations … the only reason you are here is where and when and how you chose to express your view,” Cooper said.
Gold had raised over $400,000 for her and the organization’s legal issues. Cooper said that the funds were a “disservice to the true victims that day.”
Gold’s attorney Dickson Young asked for a sentence of community medical service, stating that his client did not commit or incite violence.
“The loss of our country’s freedoms,” said Gold in a tweet on Friday regarding the sentencing.
Over 800 people have been charged with federal crimes over the breach on Jan. 6, with 300 pleading guilty and nearly 200 sentenced.