A Missouri lawyer seen with his wife brandishing guns at protesters outside their home Sunday claims they grabbed the weapons after being told they ‘would be killed’ and were placed ‘in fear of our lives’.
Mark McCloskey, 63, and his wife Patricia, 61, were filmed on Sunday evening drawing a AR-15 and handgun on protesters outside their $1.5million mansion in to a well-to-do St. Louis neighborhood.
They are heard shouting at the protesters to leave their neighborhood and have claimed that demonstrators broke down a gate into the private community.
The video of their standoff has been viewed more than 9million times with some supporting the pair’s right to protect their private property and others claiming that the couple broke the law by threatening a peaceful protest.
Mark McCloskey told KMOV-TV that a mob rushed toward the home as the family was having dinner outside, claiming that the protesters smashed through gates on their private street that are marked with ‘No Trespassing’ and ‘Private Street’ signs.
In a separate interview he said: ‘I really thought it was storming the Bastille, that we would be dead and the house would be burned’, referencing a defining moment of the French Revolution when, in 1789, a mob stormed a Paris state prison known as the Bastille, which revolutionaries saw as a symbol of the monarchy’s autocratic rule and power over them.
Mark McCloskey, the St. Louis lawyer seen in photos and videos with his wife Patricia armed with an AR-15 and a handgun as protesters marched past their residence on Sunday evening alleged that protesters threatened his life
Mark McCloskey, 63, shared these images of the gates into his private community he claims were damaged by the protesters Sunday evening. Video shows the protesters opening the gates and walking inside. It is not certain when they were damaged
Armed homeowners, Patty and Mark McCloskey, stand in front their house along Portland Place and confront protesters marching to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson’s house on Sunday
In the pictures shared online, 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 property
‘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,’ he told the outlet.
‘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.
‘As soon as I said they were on private property, that enraged the crowd. There was then a hoard of people coming through the broken gate and the gate was broken in pieces,’ he added.
‘And there were, I don’t know how many people there were, a tremendous number of people, all angry, all shouting, all coming towards us.’
In another interview with KSDK, Mark said that he announced it was private property before grabbing his rifle. He claims that there were people pulling out pistol magazines.
‘It was about as bad as it could get,’ he said. ‘I really thought it was storming the Bastille, that we would be dead and the house would be burned. There was nothing we could do about it, it was a huge and frightening crowd.’
He added: ‘There is nothing public about Portland Place. Being inside that gate is like being in my living room, there is no public anything’.
‘I had to turn the phones off,’ McCloskey continued, stating that he hadn’t slept since and had to board up his office.
‘It’s interesting to me that the very people that are asking the mayor to resign for doxxing people have now put all my information all over the web, all over the world. Is there some hypocrisy there? Maybe I’m missing something.
‘It’s been both threatening and encouraging as there’s been a number of people who have voiced their support but there have also been people who have made very direct threats of violence.’
He accused the demonstration of being part of a revolution instead of a protest, branding them ‘terrorists’ and ‘Marxists’ and claiming he is not ‘some kind of extreme anti-Black Lives Matter guy’. He cited a case where he represented a man who was a victim of police violence.
Mark McCloskey just spoke out in an interview:
He says the “protesters” threatened to kill his dog, burn down his house, and burn down his office. Mark says he isn’t against the protests and even represents clients who have been the victim of police brutality. pic.twitter.com/N5yuZXbu5A
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) June 29, 2020
The lawyer also shared pictures of the destroyed gate which he said was all down to the work of the protesters Sunday night.
KMOV-TV shared images of the gateway on Monday. The iron gate had been removed and metal barriers put in its place.
Speaking to NBC, Mark McCloskey dismissed rumors the gate was already broken as ‘nonsense’.
Despite Mark’s claims, video footage from the protest shows the demonstrators walking through the gate, which was completely intact and open, when they are immediately shouted at by an armed McCloskey to ‘get the hell out of my neighborhood’.
‘This is private property, get out,’ the lawyer is heard saying, as the person recording the video points out his gun.
A man can be heard telling McCloskey to ‘calm down’ while another is heard shouting ‘this is a public street a**hole’.
McCloskey claims they acted when protesters broke down the gates to get inside the private property but a livestream from a protesters should the gate open and them walking inside where they were immediately confronted by McCloskey with a rifle
McCloskey shared this image of the alleged damage done by the protesters
KMOV TV visited the district Monday and these gates had been removed
‘Then call the cops,’ another person shouts.
McCloskey continuously repeats ‘private property, get out’. His wife Patricia is not visible in the video.
Video of the McCloskeys went viral Sunday night after they were seen aiming the guns at demonstrators who walked by their palatial property in the wealthy Forest Park area at around 6pm on Sunday.
At one point, the pair seemed to be unknowingly pointing their weapons at one another other while trying to keep protesters away from their home – dubbed the Niemann Mansion.
The pair are both personal injury lawyers and run McCloskey Law Center from inside their extravagant home. The company’s website was taken offline on Monday afternoon.
Police said Monday that people in the crowd yelled threats at the couple and that the McCloskeys would not be charged.
The married couple came out of their house armed on Sunday to prevent protesters from walking onto their property after they claim they broke their way into a gated community. Police said not charges are being brought
About 300 protesters had gone through a gate into this closed-off community and were marching in front of the McCloskey home, which is pictured center. The family said they were having dinner outside when the demonstrators arrived
They added that they are still investigating but labeled it a case of trespassing and assault by intimidation against the couple by protesters in the racially diverse crowd.
The protesters were en route to Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home to demand her resignation after she released the names and addresses of residents who had suggested defunding the police department.
On Monday morning, President Donald Trump retweeted footage of the couple without comment.
Demonstrators chanted ‘Let’s Go’ as the couple stood their ground at their front door, patrolling back and forth.
One video posted to Twitter of the demonstration shows the woman holding her gun at a protester who is wearing a t-shirt that reads, ‘Hands up, don’t shoot’.
The individual appeared to be trying to get people to move away from the house at the time.
Patricia McCloskey is seen moving closer to the protesters speaking to them as some stand and argue back.
Other demonstrators are heard shouting at everyone to ‘Go’ as the woman continues waving her handgun at them from her front lawn and Mark McCloskey watched from the front door with his rifle.
Mark McCloskey could be seen carrying a firearm as protesters entered his neighborhood
The couple are both personal injury lawyers and run McCloskey Law Center from inside their extravagant home, dubbed Niemann Mansion, pictured here
The couple drew their firearms and watched as the protesters entered the gated community
One video showed Patricia McCloskey coming on to her front lawn closer to protesters
St. Louis police confirmed they were called to Portland Place at around 7.20pm on Sunday night for an incident involving trespassing and assault 4th intimidation after the McCloskeys issued a ‘call for help’.
‘The victims stated they were on their property when they heard a loud commotion coming from the street. When the victims went to investigate the commotion, they observed a large group of subjects forcefully break an iron gate marked with “No Trespassing” and “Private Street” signs,’ police said.
‘Once through the gate, the victims advised the group that they were on a private street and trespassing and told them to leave. The group began yelling obscenities and threats of harm to both victims.
‘When the victims observed multiple subjects who were armed, they then armed themselves and contacted police. The investigation is ongoing.’
A livestream shows protesters walking through the gate to the path in front on the McCloskey home on Portland Place. The video points out Mark McCloskey holding a gun
The lawyer couple’s house is see in the video as the protesters walk through the gate
Mr McCloskey has previously represented a victim of police brutality. The man – who was identified by the initials I.F. – was kicked and struck by police officer David Maas in shocking dashcam footage that appeared to show him surrendering.
The initials match a 2019 civil lawsuit made by Isaiah Forman in which the same allegations are put forward.
Police at the time said Forman, then 21, was driving a car that had been taken by another man at gunpoint.
The lawsuit against Maas claimed that Forman had ‘surrendered peaceably’.
According to the indictment, Maas kicked and struck Forman in April 2019 while the man was compliant and not posing a physical threat to anyone, causing ‘bodily injury’ and depriving him of his right to be ‘free from unreasonable force’.
A lawyer for Maas argued that Forman had ‘aggressively resisted arrest’ and ‘struck a police vehicle, narrowly missing a police officer in the process’.
Maas was charged with one count of deprivation of rights under color of law in March 2020.
Mr McCloskey said of the case: ‘I’m glad that the law enforcement agencies are subject to the same standard as everybody else’.
Forman pleaded guilty to crashing his car into a police vehicle during the chase and is serving a seven year sentence for second-degree assault on a special victim.
Patricia McCloskey drew a firearm on protesters as walked in front of her house on Sunday
The protesters called on each other to quickly move on when the couple emerged
The private road entrance to Portland Place where protesters broke down a gate Sunday
Saint Louis University Lawyer John Amman told KSDK that the actions of the couple Sunday could possibly be classified as assault by putting protesters in fear of their safety.
Amman added that the homeowners would have had a right to act if they felt threatened but if the protesters were walking past their home without threatening the couple specifically, they wouldn’t have the right to threaten lethal force.
Lawyer Don Calloway called on the Missouri Bar to revoke their licences.
‘A fellow lawyer from Missouri, a guy I know named Mark McCloskey committed an assault tonight in STL by pointing his AR 15 at peaceful protesters,’ he wrote.
‘He should be arrested and charged with assault immediately. The MO Bar should revoke their licenses.’
The Missouri Bar told DailyMail.com that they were aware of the video but it was a matter for Missouri’s Chief Disciplinary Counsel.
DailyMail.com reached out to the Missouri Office of the Chief Disciplinary Counsel for comment but a representative was not available.
In Missouri, there is no state licensing requirements for the possession of a rifle, shotgun or handgun.
According to the NRA, state law does not prohibit the open carrying of firearms, but does prohibit exhibiting ‘any weapon readily capable of lethal use’ in an angry or threatening manner in the presence of one or more persons.
The couple confronted the group of about 300 protesters after they broke down a gate in the neighborhood, according to NBC News.
Their home is located in Portland Place, a historic district in St. Louis listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
The gated community has just under 100 homes, all built between 1890 and 1960.
‘These two premier private streets celebrated their 100th anniversary with 77 of the original 89 houses proudly standing as tributes to the owners and the inspired architects and skilled artisans who created them,’ a plaque awarded in 1974 reads at the entrance to the district.
Husband and wife, Mark and Patricia McCloskey are both personal injury lawyers
Mark McCloskey can be seen coming out of the front door to protect his home
The protesters were en route to Mayor Krewson’s home to demand her resignation after she released names and addresses of residents who suggested defunding the police department
Twitter users were not happy at the St. Louis mayor releasing names and addresses of people who wanted to defund the police
An online petition started over the weekend calling for Mayor Krewson to resign has generated more than 40,000 signatures.
On Friday night, Mayor Lyda Krewson issued a statement apologizing for her actions. The full statement read: ‘In an effort to be transparent and accessible to the public during the Covid-19 pandemic, for more than three months now I have been doing tri-weekly community updates on Facebook.
‘Tonight, I would like to apologize for identifying individuals who presented letters to me at City Hall as I was answering a routine question during one of my updates earlier today.
‘While this is public information, I did not intend to cause distress or harm to anyone. The post has been removed.’
A protester holds a flyer calling for the resignation of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson as a couple defend their home during a protest against the mayor
An online petition started over the weekend calling for Mayor Krewson to resign has generated more than 40,000 signatures. Pictured: Police officers standing guard during the protest against Mayor Krewson
Protesters hold signs reading ‘wanted’ and ‘Black trans lives matter’ during a protest against Mayor Krewson
The word ‘resign’ is seen painted on the street in front of Mayor Krewson’s house in St. Louis
The ACLU of Missouri issued the following statement Friday evening regarding Mayor Krewson’s reading of names and addresses:
‘Today adds to the list of things we never thought we would have to say. To be clear, it is shocking and misguided for Mayor Lyda Krewson of St. Louis, to broadcast the addresses of those who dare to express a different viewpoint on an issue of public concern.
‘It serves no apparent purpose beyond intimidation. We are stronger when we foster open dialogue. The chilling of debate should bother everyone, no matter whether they agree or disagree with the mayor on this particular issue.’
The McCloskeys, who have one grown-up daughter, bought their palatial home in 1988 when Mark said it ‘had quarter-inch-thick carbon on it in some places’.
It has been appraised at $1.15 million, according to NBC.
They renovated it to its original standards in a massive 30-year project which they spoke about at great lengths in a 2018 interview.
The enormous estate features a sweeping entry hall and an enormous dining room. One of its most-prized rooms is the 70-foot long ballroom modelled off a hall in the Palazzo Davanzati in Florence.
Signs left on the door of Mayor Krewson’s house are seen during a protest calling for her resignation
A sign reading ‘Krewson puts her own citizens in danger’ was left on the mayor’s doorstep
The home – dubbed a ‘Renaissance palazzo’ previously belonged to Edward and Anna Busch at the start of the 20th century.
Mrs McCloskey previously said the original owners’ goal was ‘to build one of the most lavish and grand houses in the Midwest’.
The house has five floors and is modelled off European Renaissance palaces. The original owners brought in a ‘village of Italian stonemasons that lived in a tent city in the side yard while they finished the stonework’ in the luxurious home, Mr McCloskey said.
Mrs McCloskey added: ‘There’s a Medici house in Florence where you come in the front door and it’s exactly like this. But we haven’t found it yet.’
The couple carry out their person injury law practice from the historic home.
‘The goal of our practice is to provide those sustaining such devastating injuries, or the survivors of those killed as a result of such devastating injuries, with meaningful compensation,’ their website says.
Both attended Southern Methodist University School of Law.
Patricia McCloskey’s bio lists her as having held roles as a member of the Missouri Bar Association ethical review panel and a St. Louis city committee woman.