St. Louis couple who brandished weapons at protesters charged


The St. Louis couple who made national news for brandishing firearms at protesters who were approaching their house have been charged.

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner filed charges against Mark and Patricia McCloskey on Monday. They were each charged with one count of unlawful use of a weapon, flourishing,according to KSDK, a local NBC affiliate. The weapons charge is a class D felony, and they face anywhere from one to four years in prison and fines of up to $5,000 if convicted.

The McCloskeys drew their weapons on June 28 outside their home as protesters marched through their gated neighborhood to demand the resignation of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson. They havedefended themselves and claimed that the protesters were threatening to kill them and take over their property.

“That couple had every right to protect their property. They had the ability to do that as private citizens, like everyone else. What they should not go through is a prosecutor attempting to take their constitutional rights away by filing charges against them for protecting their property,” Gov. Mike Parson said days before the charges were filed.

The governor alsoteased pardoning the coupleover the weekend, saying, "I don't think they're going to spend any time in jail."

Al Watkins, the attorney for the McCloskey's, transferred one of their firearms to the police. Authorities reportedly wanted the gun in their possession to be sure that it wasn't operable.

President Trump has also weighed in on the case, calling the treatment of the McCloskeys a "disgrace."