|Patricia and Mark McCloskey point guns at protesters.
A husband-wife lawyer duo caused a social-media stir when they were taped over the weekend pointing guns at seemingly peaceful protesters in their posh Forest Park neighborhood near the famed St. Louis Zoo.
Mark and Patricia McCloskey head the McCloskey Law Center, a personal-injury firm that apparently generates sufficient revenue for them to live in a home with an estimated worth of $1 million. The McCloskeys reportedly are long-time supporters of the Republican Party and Donald Trump.
Mark McCloskey stated in press reports that the street in front of the couple's home, and all of the neighborhood's confines, are private property -- protected with a wrought-iron gate and marked with no-tresspassing signs. What caused protesters to wind up in a residential neighborhood? From a report at KMOV.com:
A St. Louis homeowner seen pointing guns at protesters spoke to News 4 Monday, saying he and his wife were in fear for their lives when protesters came down their street.
Hundreds of protesters chanted and marched to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson's home Sunday night calling for her resignation.
A group of 300 protesters, chanting "resign Lyda, take the cops with you," marched after Krewson read the names and addresses of demonstrators calling for police reform during a Friday afternoon Facebook Live video.
During the protest, a couple at a nearby home stepped outside with guns around 7:30 p.m. Images and videos showed 61-year-old Patricia McCloskey pointing a handgun at the crowd and her husband 63-year-old Mark McCloskey was seen holding a rifle. Mark and Patricia McCloskey are personal-injury lawyers who work together in the McCloskey Law Center in St. Louis.
The couple is receiving both praise and criticism online: some people are supporting them for protecting their property.
However St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner said her office is investigating the incident, adding that protesters should not be met with violence.
"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," Gardner tweeted.
How ugly did the neighborhood scene get? Mark McCloskey said it was pretty ugly:
Mark McCloskey reached out to News 4 Monday morning saying he was having dinner with his family outside of his home when the crowd went through wrought iron gates marked with "No Trespassing” and “Private Street” signs on Portland Place.
"A mob of at least 100 smashed through the historic wrought iron gates of Portland Place, destroying them, rushed towards my home where my family was having dinner outside and put us in fear of our lives," McCloskey said.
Despite his claims, video circulating on social media shows protesters opening and walking through the unbroken gate. It is unclear when it was actually damaged or who destroyed it.
"This is all private property. There are no public sidewalks or public streets. We were told that we would be killed, our home burned and our dog killed. We were all alone facing an angry mob," McCloskey told News 4.
Later in the night, protesters painted "RESIGN" on the street in front of the mayor's house.
The McCloskeys apparently are not old pros when it comes to handling guns. A report at heavy.com indicates they might have been more of a danger to each other than anyone else:
Mark McCloskey and Patricia McCloskey are a St. Louis couple who were seen on video and in photos pointing guns at protesters who were walking by their home in St. Louis, Missouri, on June 28, went viral on Twitter. The husband and wife, who work together as personal injury trial lawyers, came out of their house armed on Sunday to prevent protesters from walking onto their property in the Forest Park area.
In the videos shared online, however, it doesn’t appear that anyone walking in Sunday’s protest calling for the resignation of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson was trespassing on their palatial lawn or approached their house. While Mark McCloskey, 63, holds a large assault weapon and Patty McCloskey, 61, holds a handgun in the video, they end up pointing their weapons at each other while staring down protesters. (See video at the end of this post.) While a video does show the protesters walking through a pedestrian gate next to signs that say “private street,” “no trespassing” and “access limited to residents,” witnesses have said the protesters were peaceful and did not approach the McCloskeys or go onto the lawn of the “Midwestern palazzo” where they live.
The police report states that the couple contacted police ‘when they heard a loud commotion coming from the street’ and ‘observed a large group of subjects forcefully break an iron gate marked with ‘No Trespassing’ and ‘Private Street’ signs,’ BuzzFeed wrote. Police said the couple claimed protesters were ‘yelling obscenities and threats of harm to both victims’ and that they brought out their guns when they ‘observed multiple subjects who were armed.'” Police didn’t say in the report if officers verified whether any protesters were armed or if weapons were pointed at the McCloskeys, according to BuzzFeed News.