The McCloskeys: The Current Story
NPR St. Louis Public Radio
Praised by the Right and Condemned by the Left
The McCloskeys can be recognized by anyone that pays attention to politics in the United States. Upon having rioters break into their private neighborhood’s entrances, the two confronted the large crowd with their firearms. While the flashpoint has been covered by the National Times and by multiple other news outlets, it did not stop after the crowd left the first time. As reported by multiple outlets, further events unfolded:
The McCloskeys announce support BLM, but disapproval for the crowd in a public statement. While prior to being seen on Fox News or CNN, the McCloskeys showed obvious praise for Black Lives Matter while condemning the events that had taken place the first time they encountered the crowd.
When organizers carried out a second protest in the neighborhood, this time specifically against the McCloskeys, the couple had hired private security. The family lawyer had stated that getting the protection was difficult due to many security companies rejecting the McCloskeys outright.
After the second protest, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner announces charges will be pressed against the McCloskeys. The move would further propel the couple into the public spotlight as Mr. McCloskey provides an interview to the likes of Tucker Carlson and Chris Cuomo.
Following orders from Kim Gardner, St. Louis Police come to the McCloskey home with a warrant and confiscate the rifle. The McCloskeys make a public statement that they are not upset with the police officers.
Both Mark and Patricia McCloskey charged with unlawful use of a weapon by St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. The move garnered mixed reviews on both sides of the political aisle.
Missouri Governor Mike Parson states he will pardon McCloskeys if charges are pressed when speaking to Fox News's Tucker Carlson. The governor stated that the McCloskeys were "law-abiding citizens," while denouncing Kim Gardner.
Missouri AG Eric Schmitt, following Governor Mike Parson, moves to dismiss charges both publically and legally. The AG went further to denounce the moves made by Kim Gardner, calling the process a "political prosecution."
According to St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner, the couple displayed their firearms in a “threatening manner.” While the charges may have been brought about thanks to a police investigation, legal experts including the Missouri AG dispute the charges based on the conflict with castle doctrine.
Coming Fight Between St. Louis Governor and Top Prosecutor
The soon to be legal conflict that has come about from the events surrounding the McCloskeys is one between Mike Parson, Eric Schmitt, and Kimberly Gardner. Another Missouri official, Senator Josh Hawley, announced on Twitter that he requested for a civil rights probe into both Gardner and her office:
This morning I have asked the Department of Justice to open a civil rights investigation into the St Louis Circuit Attorneys Office. Targeting law abiding citizens who exercise constitutionally protected rights for investigation & prosecution is an abuse of power
St. Louis AG Eric Schmitt has taken legal action in dismissing the case brought about by Gardner. Governor Mike Parson himself has been vocal in his disapproval in the ongoing legal situation. The elected leader has stated on Twitter that the actions taken by Gardner are “outrageous.”
Wayne C. Hahne is a Policy Correspondent for The National Times