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Parson pardons McCloskeys

  

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Gov. Mike Parson pardoned Mark and Patricia McCloskey last month, the Governor’s Office said. 

The McCloskeys had pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges in June related to last year’s incident when the couple pointed firearms at protesters who marched past their house in St. Louis. 

Mark McCloskey is a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate

The McCloskeys were among the 12 pardons and two commutations Parson issued on July 30. The names had been previously withheld because of privacy concerns but were publicly released Tuesday. 

Mark McCloskey pleaded guilty to a Class C misdemeanor of assault in the fourth degree and agreed to a $750 fine. Patricia McCloskey pleaded guilty to a Class A misdemeanor of harassment in the second degree and agreed to a $2,000 fine. 

Both McCloskeys had to turn over their firearms to the state. 

In a statement, Mark McCloskey said he was thankful for the pardon but called on the governor and General Assembly to strengthen Missouri’s Castle Doctrine laws, noting the two firearms used in the incident were confiscated:

“As many of you know, Patty and I faced political prosecution for having the audacity to defend our lives and property from an angry mob. Today, we are incredibly thankful that Gov. Mike Parson righted this wrong and granted us pardons. It was actually Gov. Parson who, while serving as a state senator, led the charge to pass the Castle Doctrine — guaranteeing Missourians the right to defend themselves with all necessary force.

We appreciate the governor’s support and his steadfast commitment to the Second Amendment. However, we recognize there is still work to be done. In our case, the circuit attorney raided our home a year ago and seized the guns we used to protect ourselves. We are calling on the General Assembly to protect Missourians‘ constitutional rights and pass legislation fixing this broken piece of law. We are eager to help Gov. Parson and our state legislators do whatever it takes to strengthen Missouri’s Castle Doctrine.”

“One year ago, an angry mob crashed through my gate and threatened my wife, my family, and my home. The prosecutor dropped all charges against me except for a claim that I put people in imminent fear of physical harm. That’s exactly what I did, that’s what the guns were for. And any time the mob comes and threatens me, I’ll do the same thing again to protect my family,” Mark McCloskey said in a statement to The Missouri Times in June. 

The other people pardoned on July 30 include: Phillip Vancil, Roy Middleton, Travis Gilliland, Dennis Hargiss, Linda Floyd, Marlo Finner, Kenneth Callahan, John Biggs, Randy Huggins, and Jeremy Murray. Matthew Carrell and Deitra Cole received commutations.

“It is beyond disgusting that Mark and Patricia McCloskey admitted they broke the law and within weeks are rewarded with pardons, yet men like Kevin Strickland, who has spent more than 40 years in prison for crimes even prosecutors now say he didn’t commit, remain behind bars with no hope of clemency,” House Minority Leader Crystal Quade said. “The contrast between the governor’s treatment of these cases should offend every Missourian’s sense of justice. It also proves the governor doesn’t have one.”

This story has been updated.