Washington, DC – September 27, 2022
A guilty verdict was handed down by a D.C. jury on all charges for John Strand’s involvement with January 6th. He will face sentencing on January 12, 2023. He faces up to 24 years in prison on the five convictions. Mr. Strand and Dr. Gold were co-defendants in the same indictment. Mr. Strand was Dr. Gold’s security detail and assistant at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and was close by Dr. Gold the entire time she was in the building.
On Monday, September 19, 2022, John Strand, who has been a human rights title-holder since early 2020, appeared for a seven-day jury trial presided over by U.S. District Judge Christopher R. Cooper. Judge Cooper is the same judge who sentenced AFLDS Founder Dr. Simone Gold to a 60-day prison sentence. Mr. Strand’s trial began just days after Dr. Gold’s release from Miami Federal Detention Center.
Before trial, counsel for Mr. Strand made a request for Judge Cooper to recuse himself due to conflict of interest. Judge Cooper declined. Additionally, counsel filed a motion for a change of jurisdiction from Washington D.C. as the jury pool is documented to be poisoned against J6 defendants. During jury selection several jurors stated that they believed any person at the Capitol (or grounds) that day was guilty. The motion for change in venue was also denied.
John Strand was charged with and tried for four misdemeanor charges and one felony. For the felony charge, obstruction of justice for preventing an official proceeding, he faces a potential 20 years of prison. Mr. Strand’s conduct at the Capitol with Dr. Gold that day was entirely peaceful as captured on closed circuit TV and social media video and is detailed in a prior AFLDS press release from June 16th. As two of the charges include the requirement of “disorderly” and Mr. Strands’ peaceful behavior was captured on videotape, it is clear that the jury disregarded the evidence.
Our system only works if the prosecution (government) charges defendants correctly - jurors rely upon that being an ethical process as our judicial system does not permit the jury to know of the potential punishment, meaning the jurors did not know they were convicting Mr. Strand of a felony crime that can be punished by 20 years imprisonment. It is doubtful they would have supported such a result. They also were not permitted to be informed that Mr. Strand was offered the same plea deal offered to Dr. Gold, which likely would have resulted in no prison time or certainly not more than Dr. Gold received.
The jury was unaware that in January and again in March 2022, John Strand refused to take this very favorable plea bargain of a single misdemeanor. Instead, he stood strong in his convictions and innocence. Before his trial, Mr. Strand explained:
The situation we are facing is not legitimate, it’s not acceptable, it’s not honorable. Someone must stand up and speak the truth. It is a constitutional violation to target and prosecute and punish certain groups of people and not other groups of people for similar actions when you are explicitly choosing who to prosecute and punish based on your desire to, to isolate and silence and, you know, destroy them, based on their political affiliation or opinion.
In the face of the corrupted D.C. justice system, this act seemed to many in the freedom movement to be almost self-sacrificial. Before the trial, Mr. Strand said, “…Obviously, I am going to Washington DC. It’s a very politicized and heavily biased environment. It is not a fair and honest system or setup. I know I am innocent, so I am trusting God for the outcome.”
AFLDS again reminds you that there are countless January 6th defendants who have been denied due process as detailed in Julie Kelly’s book January 6 and the documentary film, Capitol Punishment. Mr. Strand valiantly represented all of these defendants and all Americans by standing up in Court and speaking truth to power. In turning down this favorable plea deal, Mr. Strand summed up his motivations as follows: “I will not bear false witness … including against myself.”
We at AFLDS stand behind John Strand and other January 6 defendants, some of whom still languish in prison pre-trial, 20 months, in gross violation of Constitutional due process. AFLDS strongly supports and encourages all Americans to stand up for their rights to ensure they do not disappear. We all must follow our Founding Father and third President Thomas Jefferson: “When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty.”
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