A Florida music teacher who once performed at New York’s Carnegie Hall as an opera singer has now become one of the latest Trump supporters to get dealt federal criminal charges after participating in the deadly January violence at the Capitol. That Trump supporter, Audrey Ann Southard, bragged on social media about heading to D.C., and — once in the city on January 6 — physically assaulted a police officer with a flag pole as she stormed the Capitol building alongside other frenzied Trump supporters. Southard’s federal criminal charges include assault on an officer.
Southard’s past performance at Carnegie Hall took place in 2013. Notably, she’s not the only Capitol rioter with prominent public-facing activities in their past — Olympic swimmer Klete Keller was also among the rioters, and he’s also among those facing federal criminal charges. Meanwhile, Southard has more recently worked in what appears to be a private capacity rather than associated with any particular school. A LinkedIn profile in her name identified her music teaching operation as Voxx Mechanix LLC. Questioned via email by NBC, Southard replied by telling the outlet not to “EVER” contact her “AGAIN.”
On her social media, Southard wrote messages like “Going to DC tomorrow…Patriot’s vs Traitors” and “We The People are making a declaration…1776!!” according to the FBI. “1776” is, of course, a reference to the American Revolution, indicating how the Trump supporters who participated in the Capitol riot and otherwise provided rhetorical cover for the attack viewed their stance as on par with a literal war, and this rhetoric culminated in deadly physical violence. Even Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) — a current member of Congress — tweeted “1776” on the day of the riot (but before the violence unfolded), referencing the belief that Trump supporters needed to stage some historic stand against the Congressional certification of Biden’s election victory that was scheduled for that day.
Recently, Senate Republicans filibustered a bill that would have created an independent commission to investigate the broader circumstances of the riot. In so doing, they refused to engage with the serious realities of the situation.