Gina Bisignano, the Beverly Hills salon owner arrested for her participation in the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, has returned to Beverly Hills on conditional release. After a magistrate judge initially released her on bail, Bisignano was taken back into custody late January where she remained for over a month. Bisignano was indicted by a grand jury on seven charges in February. She will remain in the city for 45 days while she closes her business, before joining family in Philadelphia to await her trial.
Bisignano and two other Beverly Hills residents, John Strand, 37, and Dr. Simone Gold, 55, were arrested over the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday weekend by the FBI, with assistance by the Beverly Hills Police Department, pursuant to federal charges filed in Washington, D.C. They appeared in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in downtown Los Angeles on Jan. 19. Both Gold and Strand were released on bail. Bisignano was granted bail in her initial hearing, but a D.C. judge stayed her release on appeal and ordered her sent to D.C.
On Feb. 4, a grand jury charged Bisignano with Obstruction of an Official Proceeding, Aiding and Abetting, Civil Disorder, Destruction of Government Property, Entering and Remaining in a Restricted Building or Grounds, Disorderly and Disruptive Conduct in a Restricted Building or Grounds, Engaging in Physical Violence in a Restricted Building or Grounds and Disorderly Conduct in a Capitol Building. Bisignano has pleaded not guilty to all seven charges.
In a Feb. 26 hearing for Bisignano’s release, defense attorney A. Charles Peruto, Jr., argued that his client had been subjected to “cruel and unusual punishment” as a part of her transfer to D.C. Bisignano had “gone from bus to bus to bus,” Peruto said, transporting her from Los Angeles to county jails in Oklahoma on her way to D.C. “In these County jails, she doesn’t even get a bed because of the overcrowding and for three nights, she was made to sleep on the floor with blankets,” he said.
Judge Carl J. Nichols pressed the government on why Bisignano could not be released under certain conditions.
“Why does the government believe that there is no set of circumstances that would assure the safety of her community if we were to impose continued GPS monitoring?” he asked.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kimberly Louise Paschall pointed to cellphone screenshots submitted in a supplemental filing. In one exchange, someone sent Bisignano a link to a video titled “Watch this NOW! INVASION IMMINENT!!!”
“That was me,” Bisignano responds. “We invaded yesterday.”
“What we’re seeing on her cell phone is a full understanding of her participation in the events and asking people to, in the government’s opinion, destroy those events by deleting photographs and deleting messages,” Paschall said. “That’s something that could continue into the future. Ms. Bisignano, if she was released, would have the opportunity to reach out to other people who may have evidence for the government.”
Judge Nichols opted to release Bisignano under a High Intensity Supervision Program. Under the conditions of her release, she must submit to supervision and wear a GPS ankle monitor. She is restricted to her residence at all times with exceptions for employment, religious services, medical treatment, and other activities approved in advance. Additionally, she may not access social media, communicate with anyone who attended the events on Jan. 6, or return to D.C. for non-court related matters.
After some confusion over how she would return to Los Angeles from Oklahoma given her financial situation, Bisignano has now returned to Beverly Hills. Friends of hers who spoke on the condition of anonymity told the Courier that she began moving out of her salon almost immediately. According to an email reviewed by the Courier, Bisignano put out a call on March 5 to former clients for new appointments, which friends say take place in her apartment. “We’re back in business!! I’m so thankful for all my clients, please let me know if you would like to schedule an appointment for lashes, waxing, or a facial!”