The protesters targeted by the McCloskeys were searching for the home of former St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, who refused to cut the city’s law enforcement budget following the death of an unarmed Black man. In an interview with CNN, Mark McCloskey, appearing with his attorney, claimed he felt “frightened” and “assaulted” when the protesters stumbled upon his home en route to the mayor’s residence. “I’m not the face of anything opposing the Black Lives Matter movement. I was a person scared for my life who was protecting my wife, my home, my hearth, my livelihood,” he said. “I was a victim of a mob that came through the gate.”
“I didn’t care what color they were,” McCloskey added. “I didn’t care what their motivation was. I was frightened. I was assaulted, and I was in imminent fear that they would run me over, kill me, burn my house.”
Pratzel mentioned in his motion another public statement Mark made after pleading guilty. “The prosecutor dropped every charge except for alleging that I purposely placed other people in imminent risk of physical injury; right, and I sure as heck did,” the attorney said. “That’s what the guns were there for and I’d do it again any time the mob approaches me, I’ll do what I can to place them in imminent threat of physical injury because that’s what kept them from destroying my house and my family.”
Rep. Cori Bush attended the protest in question and has maintained that the demonstrators were peaceful protesters. Still, Mark called her the “Marxist, liberal activist leading the mob through our neighborhood” at the Republican National Convention last year. Bush said in August his pardon is “absolutely unbelievable.” “There are pardons that we have been asking for, pardons that actually should happen in Missouri, and that was not one. That was not one,” she said. “They stood there. They pointed their guns, totally reckless, to a group of nonviolent protesters walking down a street that had no clue that they lived there, didn’t care that they lived there, didn’t know them, didn’t want to know them. Mark McCloskey is an absolute liar.”
I wish his story ended there, but the McCloskeys simply seem to have a greater sense of entitlement than they do obligation to uphold the laws they use to profit from. Mark is representing his wife in a suit against the state for $2,122.50 in costs she incurred in court costs and fines, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported last week. “There is no just basis or right for the State of Missouri to retain the above-referenced funds,” Mark wrote in the filing, citing the governor’s pardon. Mark said the pardon absolved his wife “of all wrongdoing in connection.”
The couple also filed a suit against United Press International photographer Bill Greenblatt for the viral photo taken of them outside of their home. The McCloskeys alleged in the suit that the photo taken of them breaking the law caused them “humiliation, mental anguish, and severe emotional distress,” NBC affiliate WTHR reported. And in another suit, the McCloskeys attempted to get their Colt AR-15 rifle and Bryco .380-caliber pistol back after surrendering them and agreeing to having the guns destroyed, the Post-Dispatch reported.
Because it bears reminding: The McCloskeys both pleaded guilty.
Pratzel wrote in his request to the Supreme Court that Mark “admitted the purposeful criminal conduct of placing others in apprehension of physical harm by waving his automatic rifle in their direction.”
“Finally, by pleading guilty, (he) admitted that his purposeful conduct was not justified,” Pratzel wrote.