HARRIS COUNTY, Texas — A Houston-area doctor accused of stealing 10 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in December from a Harris County Public Health District distribution site continues to wait for the Harris County District Attorney's Office to present the case to a grand jury.
Dr. Hasan Gokal was fired and charged with misdemeanor theft. A judge dismissed the charge and the Texas Medical Board cleared the doctor of any wrongdoing.
Now, Gokal’s daughter is using social media to bring attention to the case.
"When it comes to thinking about all that’s happened in the past few months ... it’s just ... it affects your daily life," Zahhra Gokal said.
Zahra Gokal said it’s been hard to concentrate on the things that matter since her father was accused of stealing the COVID-19 vaccine and giving it to family and friends.
On social media, Zahra Gokal shared what the several few months have been like for her and her family. Her tweets have been shared and liked thousands of times. She said she's received some much-needed online support.
"My heart just swelled because of all the support, the widespread support that we got. I did not expect to become that big," she said.
She wants the community to ask the Harris County District Attorney’s Office why the case hasn’t been handed over to a grand jury. Hasan Gokal’s attorney said it’s at the discretion of the DA’s Office to present the case.
"The DA’s Office wants to prosecute him. Let’s go. Let’s indict the case if that’s what you want to do and let’s get it in front of a jury and see what a jury says. If not, dismiss the case and let him move on with his life because he didn’t do anything wrong," Hasan Gokal's attorney Paul Doyle said.
Hasan Gokal said his life and career are in limbo until the case moves forward but he’s proud to know his daughter has his back until that happens.
"If this goes on for two years it would be pretty detrimental to any family to have to endure," Hasan Gokal said. "Having someone else stand by, backing me up and saying, ‘Hey, dad, you know I got you. I’m right there with you letting people know about his.’ It’s a really good feeling."
The DA’s Office issued this statement:
“We anticipate that all the evidence in this matter will be presented to a grand jury, so that representatives of the community can decide if a criminal charge is warranted. With their vote, grand jurors will determine whether the case is closed or continues to through the justice system. As you know, a magistrate judge determined there was probable cause for a criminal charge, and a misdemeanor judge later determined that there was not.”