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St. Louis attorneys Mark and Patricia McCloskey went viral when they stood in front of their million-dollar home with firearms and confronted protesters — but now Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner has vowed to have them investigated.
The McCloskeys, Mark armed with a rifle and Patricia with a handgun, stood outside as protesters marched by on the way to Democratic St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home. The protesters had broken down a gate to march onto the private drive — and McCloskey repeatedly yelled at them that it was private property.
The article goes on to state the following:
St. Louis University constitutional law Professor Anders Walker told the St. Louis Post Dispatch that if anyone broke the law, it was the protesters. Portland Place, where the McCloskeys live, is a private, gated street and the protesters were trespassing at the time of the confrontation.
The St. Louis Police Department said they would investigate the incident as a “fourth-degree assault by intimidation.”
Gardner released an official statement Monday that said:
“I am alarmed at the events that occurred over the weekend, where peaceful protestors were met by guns and a violent assault. We must protect the right to peacefully protest, and any attempt to chill it through intimidation or threat of deadly force will not be tolerated. My office is currently working with the public and police to investigate these events. Make no mistake: we will not tolerate the use of force against those exercising their First Amendment rights, and we will use the full power of Missouri law to hold people accountable.”
Meanwhile, Professor Anders Walker explains, “There’s no right to protest on those streets. The protesters thought they had a right to protest, but as a technical matter, they were not allowed to be there. It’s essentially a private estate. If anyone was violating the law, it was the protesters. In fact, if (the McCloskeys) have photos of the protesters, they could go after them for trespassing.”
Al Watkins, an attorney for Mark, 63, and Patricia,61, said the pair did not bring out their guns until two white men started menacing them, Fox News reports.
Watkins said the McCloskeys were hesitant to come forward with the full story out of fear that they would “disparage the importance of Black Lives Matter.”
“At the time, their fear was, these people, two in particular, that were marching along with the Black Lives Matter protest participants – all peaceful. They were acting in a fashion inconsistent with the message being given,” Watkins said. “My clients were not arming themselves against peaceful protesters, they were arming themselves about people with a really bad motive, a motive that runs afoul of the fundamental tenets of our country.”
Watkins said that when the couple brought their gus out, others began threatening them as they were unaware of the interaction that caused the couple to arm themselves.
“My clients, though, had to deal with comments that were from two individuals that were perpetrating these acts of violence and, not charging, but coming toward them and doing so in a fashion that was threatening, menacing, and in a fashion inconsistent with the Black Lives Matter message.”
Fox News reports: The pair called the St. Louis Police Department shortly before 7:30 p.m. Sunday. They told arriving officers that they had heard a “commotion” and, upon investigating further, “observed a large group of subjects forcefully break an iron gate marked with ‘No Trespassing’ and ‘Private Street’ signs.” according to an incident summary provided to Fox News by the department.
Further context shows that the protesters were trespassing on a private street when the St. Louis couple pulled out their guns to defend their home
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) June 29, 2020
("the homeowners broke no laws by brandishing or pointing weapons at them because Portland Place is a private street. He said they are legally protected by Missouri's Castle Doctrine, which allows people to use deadly force to defend private property.")
— Tom Gara (@tomgara) June 29, 2020
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