The McCloskeys sparked national outrage — and praise from Donald Trump — after pointing their weapons at racial justice protesters walking past their house on their way to the home of the St. Louis mayor a year ago. The two claimed the racially mixed crowd intended to kill them and burn down their house. None of that was true.
They were indicted on felony charges but pleaded guilty last week to assault and harassment misdemeanor counts and were fined $3,000. As part of their plea deal to dodge prison time, Patricia McCloskey surrendered the handgun she had aimed at protesters, and her husband agreed to relinquish the rifle he used.
Mark McCloskey said outside the courthouse Thursday that he agreed with prosecutors that he had put protesters in “imminent fear of physical harm. That’s what the guns were for,” he said defiantly, vowing to “do the same thing again” whenever a “mob” threatens his family.
He admitted in an affidavit four years ago that he had challenged one of his own neighbors “at gunpoint” for cutting across a section of the neighborhood.
Richard Callahan, the special prosecutor assigned to the case, said in a statement that the plea agreement was reasonable, in part because no shots had been fired, nobody had been injured, and the McCloskeys had called the police.
“The protesters were a racially mixed and peaceful group, including women and children, who simply made a wrong turn on their way to protest in front of the mayor’s house,” said Callahan’s statement.
McCloskey’s Democratic opponent in the race for Senate capitalized on his menacing gun incident in a campaign ad early this month. In it, candidate Lucas Kunce cocks a firearm, appears to aim at something, then says: “Forget it … Stunts like that … are for those clowns on the other side, like that ‘Mansion Man’ Mark McCloskey.”
Critics on Twitter couldn’t quite believe McCloskey was already shopping for a new weapon.
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