A Missouri couple who brandished firearms at BLM demonstrators may have their law license suspended.
The gun-toting couple in St. Louis, Missouri, who earned national attention for standing on their lawn and pointing rifles at protesters protesting racial injustice, may have their licenses to practice law revoked.
According to a court filing first reported by Kansas City, Missouri, radio station KCUR-FM, Missouri Chief Disciplinary Counsel Alan Pratzel, whose office is responsible for investigating ethical complaints against Missouri lawyers, asked the state Supreme Court this week to suspend their law licenses.
According to the Associated Press, Pratzel's motion contended that the McCloskeys' actions demonstrated "indifference to public safety" and constituted "moral turpitude," necessitating discipline, and recommended that the state Supreme Court suspend their licenses indefinitely. Additionally, Pratzel argued in his court brief that while a pardon expunges a conviction, "the individual's guilt remains."
Barefoot and brandishing rifles, images and videos of Mark McCloskey and his wife, Patricia, standing in front of their mansion on June 28, 2020, as protesters marched through their gated community went viral in the aftermath of the police shooting of George Floyd in Minneapolis — quickly becoming a symbol of a divided nation.
At the time, the protestors were their route to Mayor Lyda Krewson's (D) residence to demand her resignation amid nationwide Black Lives Matter demonstrations. There were no shots fired, and no one was injured.
The publicity appears to have done little harm to the pair, instead making them into right-wing celebrities. The duo, both in their sixties, spoke at the Republican National Convention last August and were lauded by various Republican officials, including President Donald Trump, who spoke out in support of their conduct.
Mark McCloskey also declared his candidacy for one of Missouri's US Senate seats in May, using photographs from the tense confrontation with protesters in his campaign advertisements.
The pair did not immediately react to a request for comment regarding the possibility of their legal licenses being suspended. Additionally, The Washington Post's request for response to the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel was not immediately responded to.
Mark McCloskey pleaded guilty to misdemeanor fourth-degree assault and received a $750 punishment, while Patricia McCloskey pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment and received a $2,000 fine. Both agreed to surrender the firearms they used in the now-famous incident.
However, because the charges were misdemeanors, the McCloskeys' law licenses and right to own firearms were not automatically revoked.
Mark McCloskey was unapologetic during their June plea hearing.
“I'd do it again,” he stated from the steps of the downtown St. Louis courthouse. “Whenever the mob approaches me, I will do everything I can to put them in immediate bodily danger, as this is what has kept them from destroying my house and family.”
According to the indictment, he emerged with an AR-15-style rifle while Patricia waved a semiautomatic handgun, with the couple claiming that the demonstrators had broken through an iron gate onto their private roadway and appeared menacing. According to protest organizers, their march was peaceful.
Following their pardon, the McCloskeys told The Post that they had suffered "political prosecution" for having the audacity to protect their lives and property against an angry mob.