Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the wealthy personal injury lawyers who pointed guns at peaceful protesters during a march near their St. Louis mansion in June, were indicted Tuesday by a grand jury.
The grand jury brought felony gun and evidence tampering charges against the couple, St. Louis Circuit Clerk Thomas Kloeppinger told reporters. The indictments are sealed, but Kloeppinger reportedly said he didn’t know why. The evidence tampering charge reportedly centers around Patricia McCloskey’s claim that the gun she was holding was inoperable but which was later ordered by a prosecutor to be reassembled, according to KMOV.
The McCloskeys were caught on video and photographed brandishing weapons and yelling at protesters who marched through their posh St. Louis neighborhood on June 28, on the way to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home. St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner charged the couple with unlawful use of a weapon, a felony, in July.
Mark McCloskey criticized the indictment in comments to reporters following the announcement on Tuesday.
“The government chooses to persecute us for doing no more than exercising our right to defend ourselves, our home, our property and our family, and now we’re getting drug here time after time after time, and for what?” Mark McCloskey told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We didn’t fire a shot. People were violently protesting in front of our house and screaming death threats and threats of rape and threats of arson. Nobody gets charged, but we get charged.”
Since the June 28 incident, the McCloskeys have become something of a cause célèbre in the conservative movement. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in July that President Trump thinks it’s “absolutely absurd what is happening to the McCloskeys” and claimed it was “an extreme abuse of power” by Gardner. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson has said that he would pardon the couple if they’re convicted.
In August, the couple made an appearance at the Republic National Convention to claim that the Democrats want to “abolish the suburbs.”
“The radicals are not content just marching in the streets. They want to walk the halls of Congress,” Mark McCloskey said during the pre-taped RNC appearance. “They want to take over. They want power. This is Joe Biden’s party. These are the people who will be in charge of your future, and the future of your children.”
Cover: In this June 28, 2020 file photo, armed homeowners Mark and Patricia McCloskey, standing in front their house along Portland Place confront protesters marching to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson's house in the Central West End of St. Louis. (Laurie Skrivan/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP File)