A St. Louis couple, Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who went viral after photos and videos showed them brandishing firearms at protestors who marching without permission through their private, gated community and toward the mayor’s mansion, have been charged with a felony of unlawful use of a weapon/flourishing by City Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. The charge can carry a sentence of up to four years in prison and/or possibly a fine and no jail time.
Gardner, who sent out a tweet regarding the charges, has been trying to make a name for herself since she took office in 2016, promising to increase diversity, bring independent investigations of police use of force, work to reduce racial disparities, and enhance gun control.
In 2018, The Observer did an article on Gardner stating she needed to be investigated. The article read in part "The great strength of our nation is that no person is above the law. Not even those who enforce the law. That’s why it’s imperative that the state of Missouri begin investigating the St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. Anyone following the twists and turns of the prosecution of Missouri Governor Eric Greitens won’t need much persuading. In that case, the St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner has clearly, repeatedly and consistently violated the ethics of her profession and brought disgrace upon the Circuit Attorney’s office. She has skirted and flouted the law in ways that are truly unimaginable. And she needs to be removed from office in order to send a message to prosecutors around the nation: you abuse your offices' power at your own peril". The article went on to say that Gardner "Has ignored cases that were easy wins, prosecuted cops with what looks like outright malice, and lost staff and personnel at an alarming rate". An article in St. Louis Magazine goes into great detail explaining the circumstances and allegations surrounding Kim Gardner and the Grietens case.
It is also notable that Kim Gardner's campaigns have been partially funded by the George Soros' backed Safety and Justice PAC. In 2016, the PAC contributed over $190k, and this year, in her current re-election, the Missouri Justice & Public Safety PAC has donated over $77k. UncoverDC has reported on Soros' successful attempts to buy local District Attorney's seats. Soros spokesman Michael Vachon, told Just the News. "Yes, it's no secret we contribute to Safety and Justice PACs". He added, "We are for criminal justice reform".
Since Gardner seems to be continuing on a crusade against the 2nd Amendment rights of United States citizens and Missouri residents, Missouri State Attorney General Eric Schmitt said Monday via Twitter that he is "entering this case and seeking dismissal of this case to protect the rights of Missourians to defend themselves and their property". The “political prosecution” targeting Mark and Patricia McCloskey by Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner would have “a chilling effect on Missourians’ exercising the right to self-defense.” He continued, “The right to keep and bear arms is given the highest level of protection in the Missouri constitution and our laws, which I am charged with protecting”.
“And yet in the wake of radical calls to defund the police, and with rates of violent crimes skyrocketing each day, the St. Louis circuit attorney filed suit against a St. Louis couple who according to published reports were doing just that — defending the safety of their family and their property”, Schmitt continued. “Enough is enough,” he said. “As Missouri’s chief law enforcement officer I simply will not stand by while a Missouri law (is) being ignored. That’s why I’m entering this case and seeking dismissal of this case to protect the rights of Missourians to defend themselves and their property.”
Gate to Private Road that was damaged last month when protestors broke through.
Last month, Mark and Patricia McCloskey defended their home with legally owned firearms after "protestors" broke down a wrought iron gate to gain access to the private street in order to "protest" in front of St. Louis' mayor home which is in the city’s Central West End neighborhood. Video of the incident quickly went viral. Missouri's Castle Doctrine MS Code 563.031 cites in part, "A person may, subject to the provisions of subsection 2 of this section, use physical force upon another person when and to the extent he or she reasonably believes such force to be necessary to defend himself or herself or a third person from what he or she reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful force. Section 2 states, "A person shall not use deadly force upon another person under the circumstances specified in subsection 1 of this section unless: (1) He or she reasonably believes that such deadly force is necessary to protect himself, or herself or her unborn child, or another against death, serious physical injury, or any forcible felony; (2) Such force is used against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter a dwelling, residence, or vehicle lawfully occupied by such person; or (3) Such force is used against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter private property that is owned or leased by an individual, or is occupied by an individual who has been given specific authority by the property owner to occupy the property, claiming a justification of using protective force under this section". Also, in Section 3 (2). "A person does not have a duty to retreat: From private property that is owned or leased by such individual".
Based on the Missouri law cited above, the McCloskey's were well within their rights to protect their property. "It seems like the only person in the United States who thinks we did something wrong is our [city's] circuit attorney. She is the same person that let out of jail everybody that was responsible for the looting and fires and destruction, following the George Floyd death, in the city of St. Louis," McCloskey told Tucker Carlson of Fox News' Tucker Carlson Tonight.