St. Louis Couple That Defended Home from Protesters Face November Trial

Published reports say a Nov. 1 trial date is tentatively set for Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the St. Louis couple that stood outside their home last year to ward off protesters. (Screen snip, YT, PBS)

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- The St. Louis couple whose armed defense of their home from protesters last summer made national news now faces a criminal trial tentatively scheduled during the first week of November, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Mark and Patricia McCloskey became reluctant celebrities of sorts last year when they were caught on video carrying guns outside their mansion after protesters allegedly broke through a gate and entered their property. As reported by the Portland Press Herald and Associated Press, “The protesters ventured onto a private street that includes the McCloskey mansion. The couple, both of them attorneys in their early 60s, said they felt threatened after protesters broke down an iron gate and ignored a ‘No Trespassing’ sign. Protest leaders denied damaging the gate and said the march was peaceful.”

The march was actually headed toward the home of then-St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, according to published reports. Nobody has ever explained why the crowd veered onto the McCloskey’s property, which was protected by a gated barrier.

Mark McCloskey was armed with an AR-15-style rifle and his wife held a small semiautomatic pistol. Images of the couple have become famous, and went viral almost immediately following the incident. They have been interviewed on various Fox News programs and elsewhere, and their case also got attention because of allegations Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner sent fundraising emails during her reelection campaign last year mentioning the case.

The case has raised questions about the rights of people to defend their homes with firearms in situations where protesters pose a threat. Even though leaders of the protest insisted the march was peaceful, that apparently was not how the McCloskey’s viewed the situation.

Expect a considerable amount of controversy as this case moves forward. Another hearing is set next month, the Post-Dispatch reported. Does a protest march have any First Amendment right to step onto private property? Has anyone been arrested for breaking through the McCloskey’s gate?

The case may cut to the core purpose of the Second Amendment. In the 2008 case of District of Columbia v. Heller, it was established by the Supreme Court that the people have a right to keep a handgun in the home for self-defense.

Does the right to keep and bear arms apply to defending the home, or just the people inside?

Patricia McCloskey held a handgun, while Mark McCloskey held an AR-15-type rifle. Joe Biden and Capitol Hill anti-gunners consider such a firearm to be an “assault weapon” that should be banned, while gun rights activists insist modern semiautomatic sporting rifles like the one McCloskey carried, are in common use and most certainly are protected by the Second Amendment. The high court has yet to weigh in on that subject.

The McCloskeys were indicted by a St. Louis grand jury in October on a felony charge of unlawful use of a weapon and evidence tampering, the Post-Dispatch detailed, and some argue charges should never have been brought. Missouri Gov. Mike Parsons announced he would pardon the couple if they are convicted, which may further muddy the legal water that has already been stirred by the fact the protest was part of the strife following last year’s death of George Floyd in Minneapolis after being pinned to the ground for more than nine minutes with a knee across his neck. The former police officer responsible for that use of force was recently convicted of murder.

A special prosecutor has been appointed, according to KSDK News. He is Richard Callahan, a former U.S. attorney, and judge.

The McCloskey’s are represented by attorney Joel Schwartz, who has argued the grand jury process was “tainted” by Gardner, who did win re-election last fall.

There is even more drama in this case. According to Politico, Mark McCloskey “is considering running for the Senate in 2022, after Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., announced in March he would not seek reelection.”

The McCloskey’s appeared in a video message during last year’s Republican National Convention. As reported by Politico, “The couple became a cause célèbre for conservatives and won the support of then-President Donald Trump, who used the incident to advance a central theme of his reelection campaign — that far-left activists were overrunning upscale communities.”


About Dave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms, and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

Dave Workman

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Buster
Buster
2 days ago

“Malicious prosecution” is beginning to fit this scenario. A monsterous warchest of funds should be raised specifically for prosecuting any person who participates in this illegal activity.

buzzy
buzzy
3 days ago

So those that choose to trespass and destroy property ( breaking and entering ) do not have to defend their actions in the eyes of the law . But those that choose to defend their selfs and their property from mobs encroaching on their personal property after breaking and entering by protestors , have to defend their actions at great cost under our system of so called justice . Everything is upside down in this country . And something is going to give sooner or later . Sadly a vast majority cannot or are unwilling to see it . Politicians… Read more »

RoyD
RoyD
3 days ago
Reply to  buzzy

Hey, commies are going to commie, it’s what they do. What are you going to do?

Laddyboy
Laddyboy
3 days ago

To the McClosky family and lawyer(s),
Remember that the “state” TAMPERED with the evidence of the pistol”. They TOOK the pistol in a NON-FIREABLE condition(the news) and FIXED it so it would fire!

Ryben Flynn
Ryben Flynn
3 days ago

With the photo of the broken and damaged gate that pretty much blows the protesters statement the gate was open. And technically ignoring a “No Trespassing” sign gives the owner the right to defend his property. It is never OK to protest on private property, you must remain on public property.
A Gated Community requires permission to enter from an owner or you are trespassing.
They better be declared innocent.

TEEBONE
TEEBONE
3 days ago

“[S]emiautomatic sporting rifles like the one McCloskey carried, are in common use and most certainly are protected by the Second Amendment. The high court has yet to weigh in on that subject.” Dave, the Court did weigh in on that subject in U.S. v. Miller (1939), albeit indirectly. It established the following: “In the absence of any evidence tending to show that possession or use of a ‘shotgun having a barrel of less than eighteen inches in length’ at this time has some reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia, we cannot say that the… Read more »

Last edited 3 days ago by TEEBONE
buzzsaw
buzzsaw
3 days ago
Reply to  TEEBONE

Since the militia was meant to fulfill duties of a standing army, it would be equipped exactly like the army. I argue that the Miler Decision says that anything issued to an infantry unit is protected by the Second Amendment, especially full auto or select-fire weapons. Actually, the type of weapon is, or should be, irrelevant in this case. Once the threshold of justified lethal force is crossed, the form that force takes shouldn’t matter. Would this even be an issue if Mr. McCloskey had gone out with a lever or bolt action rifle made of blued steel and walnut,… Read more »

RoyD
RoyD
3 days ago
Reply to  buzzsaw

Or a bow and arrows for that matter.

Deplorable Bill
Deplorable Bill
3 days ago

The mob was lucky they didn’t get shot up. They were trespassing. They were destroying property and they(at least some of them) were armed. They were advancing upon the homeowners. The mob verbally threatened the homeowners. There was plenty reason for the homeowners to believe their lives were in danger. There was good, legal reason for the homeowners to be armed, to display those arms and to shoot. I expect the mob thought twice before advancing more than they did. Recent history has shown us all what mobs and mob mentality brings to an otherwise peaceful situation. Violence, arson, looting,… Read more »

Bdcaron
Bdcaron
3 days ago

Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner is another one of several Soros’ puppets installed around the county. He and his sons need to be gone. They are causing the same trouble all around the planet.

Luv2shoot
Luv2shoot
3 days ago

If I remember correctly her pistol was disabled to prevent it from firing. The DA ordered it to be restored into firing order. His America’s Rifle 15 was unloaded and the police never found ammunition for it. That’s what I read some months ago. So neither weapon was capable at the time of harming anyone unlike the “peaceful protestors” who broke down their gate and mobbed their property were capable of doing.

Will
Will
3 days ago
Reply to  Dave Workman

Dave,in a court of law it would make no difference what the protestors thought!

Roland T. Gunner
Roland T. Gunner
3 days ago

Self defense is not the “core purpose” of the 2nd Amendment. That would be resisting a tyrannical government. Thst being said, I am still confused; what is this couple being charged with? We don’t have a crime problem in America, we have a black and brown problem in America.

Sisu
Sisu
3 days ago

@Roland T. Gunner, Your assessment suggests you are either a “troll” attempting to incite or a “simpleton”. … The American People’s fundamental problem is too many refusal to accept that America’s foundation values are Judaeo-Christian (even “make no law respecting an establishment of religion”), and not multi-culturalism. … Now nearly fully undermined by “government” as the “established religion” (note there is no statutory or case law definition of “religion” to be found in the laws of the USA), foreign agents controlling Washington, DC, and too many state legislatures (including organized crime syndicates, communists, islamists), and a large segment of uneducated… Read more »

Patriot Solutions
Patriot Solutions
3 days ago

Or as Ted Cruz said many weeks ago 2A is for killing tyrants. The same tyrants that want Americans to believe 2A is only for self defense but this is in no way an endorsement from me for Cruz.

Laddyboy
Laddyboy
3 days ago

@RTG; You last sentence got the AMPLIFIED DOWN VOTE from me and THOUSANDS of other American Patriots!!

Tionico
Tionico
3 days ago

Dave..please get this right. Officer Chauvin did NOT have his knee accross Floyd’s NECK. That is the antifa meme. Other video footage show it accross his shoulders, the exact position Chauvin was trained to use to prevent physical injury from the thrashing about typical of those overdosed on Fantanyl, as Chauvin was. Further,,autopsy report declares NO trauma to the enck area of any kind. Nor was he asphyxiated, which would have shown up on examination hd he been choked to death as alledged. The jury sold out to fear, and poiltical pressure. Let us hope the same thing does not… Read more »

Arny
Arny
3 days ago
Reply to  Tionico

I would have to argue. I don’t support Antifa, BLM ETC. But I saw the video that day. He had his knee on his neck while playing pocket pool. Whether he caused any injuries is another argument, as seen in video. https://youtu.be/CEZh0C-pmaw

Grim
Grim
3 days ago
Reply to  Tionico

Chauvin killed Floyd, end of story.

james
james
3 days ago
Reply to  Grim

Chauvin and Floyd worked security at a restaurant, that was burned to the ground after the riots. He had history and should have let other officers take control of Floyd. He also refused to let a trained firefighter with medical training help. No matter how much drugs were in his system, he was denied medical care. All he had to do when the other leo said, no pulse, we should sit him up, NO CHEST COMPRESSIONS.

MICHAEL J
MICHAEL J
3 days ago

If anything was criminal it was the prosecutor who obviously has marching orders from up high. Justice should start there.

uncle dudley
uncle dudley
3 days ago

The people who trespassed on private property had no right to be there and they should have all been charged with breaking the law.
What happened in Minnesota had nothing to do with St Louis or the state of Missouri and if they felt like they needed to protest or have a march then they should have done it in Minnesota.
This case needs to be dropped and the record cleared for the McCloskeys.

Cruiser
Cruiser
3 days ago
Reply to  uncle dudley

Here Here!
Last time I checked trespassing is against the law, defending your rights is not.

Last edited 3 days ago by Cruiser
JSNMGC
JSNMGC
3 days ago
Reply to  uncle dudley

The police followed orders to not enforce the laws against the mob. The police followed orders to enforce the laws against the McCloskeys. Totalitarians need a lot of laws. They order LEOs to enforce the laws against those they don’t like and not to enforce the laws against those they do like. It’s the easiest way to control people, after gaining power by promising to fix people’s problems (like a perception that ammo prices are too high). The strategy relies on a large number of LEOs who will enforce any law when ordered to do so and not enforce any… Read more »

American Cynic
American Cynic
3 days ago

Free the McCloskey’s now!!
They did not shoot anyone, they did not leave their property, and the question in this case is whether they had a right to bear arms to defend their home. I believe that the answer is yes.

Arny
Arny
3 days ago
Reply to  American Cynic

The Founders’ generation saw the protection of property as vital to civil society.20 See,e.g., Ely, supra note 4, at 10–27; Richard A. Epstein, Takings: Private Property and the Power of Eminent Domain 17 (1985) (“The classical liberal tradition of the founding generation prized the protection of liberty and private property under a system of limited government.”); Arthur Lee, An Appeal to the Justice and Interests of the People of Great Britain, in the Present Disputes with America 29 (1775) (“The right of property is the guardian of every other right, and to deprive a people of this, is in fact… Read more »

Last edited 3 days ago by Arny
Rowboat
Rowboat
3 days ago

Ammoland needs to do a better job with screening the comments fo keep the porn hawkers off.

hippybiker
hippybiker
3 days ago

Scumbag!

APG member
APG member
3 days ago

Expect to be bankrupted in court defending yourself if you choose to bear arms on your own property when confronting an angry MOB. That said, the McCloskey’s need to take a firearms training course….

Tionico
Tionico
3 days ago
Reply to  APG member

Yes, they were sloppy in their gun handling. But the RIGHT to arms is not contingent upon such skills. Though some states want to mandate epensive proffessioinal training, thus posing a direct impediment or prior restraint upon exercise of the right to arms. I saw some video of the incident, and while they were being very loose in their handling of their weapons, they DID certainly appear to be facing a very serious threat to their own lives, let alone their home. And, as Heller and McDonald have helped clarify, we DO have the right to arms at least upon… Read more »

APG member
APG member
3 days ago
Reply to  Tionico

You thought I was implying their right is contingent upon training, or are you just virtue signaling?!?! Ease up snowflake, that was not my implication…