POWAY, Calif. (CNS) — A Poway man was charged Tuesday with an attack on health care workers at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Orange County after they asked him to don a mask.
Thomas Apollo, 44, was told to leave Families Together clinic in Tustin just before 10 a.m. Dec. 30 when he refused to wear a mask, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office and police. He allegedly called the clinic workers "murderers" and cursed at them as they told him to don a mask or go outside, prosecutors said.
Apollo allegedly punched a medical assistant five times and another one twice, prompting staffers and bystanders to struggle to hold him down as police arrived, prosecutors said. Officers eventually subdued him with a Taser, prosecutors said.
Later, when he was taken to OC Global Medical Center to be treated for minor cuts and scratches, he allegedly grabbed and bent a nurse's finger and groped her breast.
Apollo is charged with a count of battery on a nurse as well as two counts of battery and a count of resisting arrest, all misdemeanors. He could face up to three years in jail if convicted.
Apollo is scheduled to be arraigned March 30 in the Central Justice Center in Santa Ana.
Families Together is a nonprofit that has been one of Orange County's top administrators of COVID-19 vaccines during the pandemic, regularly listed in the top 10 in terms of doses. Families Together has doled out 45,116 doses of vaccines, or 1.01% of the amount in the county.