St. Louis man wants his guns back after governor's pardon

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis man who along with his wife was pardoned after waving guns at social justice demonstrators has filed a lawsuit to have the guns returned and to have fines the couple paid returned to them.

Mark McCloskey, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, argued in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in St. Louis City Circuit Court that the pardon he and his wife, Patricia, received from Gov. Mike Parson nullifies all judgments and orders in the case, The Kansas City Star reported.

The government seized the McCloskeys' Colt AR-15 rifle and Bryco pistol after he pleaded guilty in June to misdemeanor assault and was fined $750. His wife pleaded guilty to second-degree misdemeanor harassment and was fined $2,000.

Parson announced Tuesday that he had pardoned the McCloskeys, as he had promised to do after they were charged.

In his petition, McCloskey, who is a lawyer, said the pardon absolved him of “all wrongdoing.”

“The politically-motivated charges that were used to seize our guns were dropped and now the Governor has granted both Patty and me pardons,” Mark McCloskey said in a statement. “I filed a lawsuit today to demand that the Circuit Attorney return our guns immediately.”

The McCloskeys, both lawyers in their 60s, said they felt threatened by the demonstrators who were passing their home in June 2020 while walking to the nearby home of the mayor to protest George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis. The couple also said the group was trespassing on a private street.

The confrontation drew national attention to the couple, who were praised by conservatives and then-President Donald Trump.

No shots were fired and no one was hurt, and special prosecutor Richard Callahan later determined the protesters were peaceful.