ST. LOUIS (AP) — A Missouri official is asking the state Supreme Court to suspend the law licenses of the St. Louis couple who gained national attention last year when they waved guns at racial injustice protesters outside their home in the city’s Central West End.
Missouri Chief Disciplinary Counsel Alan Pratzel, in a court filing, cited Mark and Patricia McCloskey’s guilty pleas to misdemeanors stemming from the encounter, in June 2020. Pratzel’s office is responsible for investigating ethical complaints against Missouri lawyers.
Mark McCloskey, who is among several Republican candidates for U.S. Senate in 2022, pleaded guilty in June to misdemeanor fourth-degree assault and was ordered to pay a $750 fine. Patricia McCloskey pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment and was ordered to pay a $2,000 fine.
Gov. Mike Parson pardoned them on July 30. Pratzel’s motion said that although a pardon erased a person’s conviction, “the person’s guilt remains.”
An attorney for the McCloskeys declined comment on Monday.
Pratzel said both crimes showed “indifference to public safety” and involved “moral turpitude,” warranting discipline. He recommended that the Supreme Court indefinitely suspend the McCloskeys’ licenses.
The June 28, 2020, protests followed George Floyd’s death under a Minneapolis police officer’s knee. The McCloskeys said the protesters broke through an iron gate onto their private street and were threatening, though protest organizers said the march was peaceful.
Mark McCloskey emerged with an AR-15-style rifle, and Patricia McCloskey waved a semiautomatic pistol, according to the indictment. Cellphone video captured the confrontation. No shots were fired and no one was hurt.
Even after their guilty pleas, Mark McCloskey was unapologetic.
“I’d do it again,” Mark McCloskey said immediately after the hearing. “Any time the mob approaches me, I’ll do what I can to put them in imminent threat of physical injury because that’s what kept them from destroying my house and my family.”