Following Indictment, Missouri Governor Parson Again Vows to Pardon the McCloskeys if Convicted

Missouri Governor Mike Parson

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

After St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner had sent police to confiscate the guns that Michael and Patricia McCloskey used in their much-photographed defense of their St. Louis home, Missouri Governor Mike Parson was interviewed by a local radio host about the situation. He issued a relatively vague statement declaring that he’d consider pardoning the McCloskeys if and when they were charged and convicted.

Cox: Just hypothetically, if Kim Gardner is to try to prosecute one of these two people and tries to take them into a jury trial and gets them convicted, do you as governor have the power to pardon or commute something like that?

Parson: Oh, by all means I would and … I think that’s exactly what would happen. You know, right now, you know, that’s exactly what I feel. You don’t know until you hear all the facts and all that, but right now, if this is all about going after them because they did a lawful act, yeah, if that scenario ever happened, I don’t think they’re gonna spend any time in jail.

Now that a grand jury has indicted the two attorneys on a pair of charges resulting from their home defense, Parson has come out with a more categorical statement.

From The Hill:

Parson said at a news conference on Wednesday that he “most certainly would” issue a pardon for the couple should they be convicted on counts of exhibiting a weapon and tampering with evidence brought against them over the June incident, according to The Associated Press.

“We’ll let it play out and see how this all comes out in the courts, but I stand by what I said,” Parsons continued.

The McCloskeys face more jeopardy than jail time. If the case goes to trial and they’re convicted, a pardon wouldn’t keep them from potentially being disbarred. Watch this space.


  1. avatar Elmer Fudd says:

    I would be interested to know exactly what they allegedly did to one of the firearms to make it inoperable that has led to the most recent charge of tampering with evidence. Did some neophyte neglect to insert the bolt and bolt carrier assembly in their AR-15?

    1. avatar former water walker says:

      BREAKING: Dudes in Michigan arrested for “plot” against Gov. Witmer. BS AT 11…nothing about BlackLootersMurder or Jihadists in Hamtrainic or Dearborn😕

    2. avatar jakee308 says:

      They are probably claiming that the McCloskeys rendered the pistol inoperable AFTER she displayed it to the trespassers. That was the reasoning for the confiscation as the McC’s were claiming she wasn’t holding a working pistol. (which usually doesn’t mean squat in court as far as display, brandishing or ADW. A firearm doesn’t have to be working to be considered a threat)

      They really are taking this to the wall. I suspect that Mr. McCloskey has made some enemies in the court system of ST.L or the state and that is also part of their aggression.

      I hope the governor does keep his word and pardons them as I foresee this coming down not in their favor. The system and not just the AG are gunning (heh) for them.

    3. avatar joeyj says:

      The handgun had been assembled with the firing pin/firing pin spring positions reversed rendering the firearm incapable of firing. This allegedly had been done during a previous case in which the McCloskeys had used the firearm as an exhibit.

  2. avatar RayS says:

    Some early article said her .380 was inop. Didnt say why.

    1. avatar Elmer Fudd says:

      What model . 380 was she armed with? Given her lack of expertise, I might have removed the firing pin just to ensure that she didn’t shoot me.

      1. avatar The Rookie says:

        The online consensus seems to be it was likely a Jiminez JA 380.

    2. avatar rosignol says:

      According to the news report I read, the firing pin had been removed to render it incapable to fire, which was required to use it as a prop in a courtroom. Which means it’s inoperability had been verified (and presumably documented) by someone at the courthouse.

      1. avatar A O says:

        True, but prove it wasn’t already in that condition when she originally ‘utilized’ the firearm to defend herself. It’s the DA/SA stacking charges.

        1. avatar Dev says:

          The police investigators reassembled the gun to make it operable. The DA should be arrested and charged for malicious prosecution and fraud.

        2. avatar Elmer Fudd says:

          This case just blew up on the DA’s face. To make your case for tampering with evidence, they have to prove that the gun was reassembled incorrectly between the time of the confrontation and when police confiscated it. Under normal circumstances, the DA might be able to persuade the jury to presume that the gun was incorrectly reassembled after the confrontation. However; if there are court records to confirm that the gun was introduced as a prop in a court case prior to the confrontation, then the menacing charges go out the window. Even more amusing, it is the prosecutor, not the defendants who have tampered with evidence.

          Final observation.
          Reassembling a gun with the firing pin and spring installed incorrectly exhibits a level of gun expertise that I didn’t expect from the MacCkoskeys. I suspect that they consulted a gun Smith and had him do the work. If so, then that gun Smith is a witness who can attest to when the gun was rendered inoperable. This is hilarious.

          The prosecutor better how an attorney.

  3. avatar Baldwin says:

    A pardon? In the meantime, the perpetrators walk free and the victims are spending a fortune on this malicious prosecution, are subjected to public humiliation, are having their world turned upside down all for the entertainment of the local DA and the local political machine that could have ended it from the very start.
    What’s wrong with this picture?

    1. avatar MLee says:

      After looking at the elements for the crimes they are charged with, self-defense laws and the castle doctrine, in my view the prosecution is purely political. I would be astonished that in a court of law they were found guilty by a jury. Missouri is a state that must reimburse if the subjects of the prosecution are acquitted. Certain cases.
      Just like here in Washington State, if I am charged with assault or even murder and I claim self-defense and put on a self-defense case or defense in court and win and acquitted, the state is on the hook for my defense costs including lawyers, all of it. They whole idea of this is to reign in malicious prosecutions where some prosecutor knows better but prosecutes just to bury someone and make their life miserable.
      The McCloskeys will probably walk a number of ways. (1)The prosecutions drops the case near the beginning a trial because the prosecutor knows the state is going to lose so they dismiss the case so the state isn’t on the hook for the bill but the McCloskeys are. (2) They win in a trial and the state pays. (3) They are convicted and get a pardon. I think a dismissal or acquittal is most likely

      1. avatar Baldwin says:

        Reimbursing actual costs falls far short of the real price paid by the victim in this case. Unless damages are awarded also.

  4. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    Free the McCloskeys and jail the prosecutor.

    1. avatar Wayne says:

      Agreed. Switch them around.

  5. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    How many proud non voters on TTAG are willing to be a on a jury to vote nullification? If we are on our own? Then don’t rely or wait for a Politian to help you or others. Do we have a civic duty or not?

  6. avatar FedUp says:

    So, you’re going to pardon them, but you want to put them through a trial first, wasting both their money and the money of The People of the State of Missouri?

    Or you think promising to pardon somebody you aren’t actually going to pardon is helpful to next month’s elections?

    1. avatar Vic Nighthorse says:

      You think the governor can directly stop a prosecution by a city attorney?

      1. avatar FedUp says:

        You think a governor can only pardon convictions?

        1. avatar Hannibal says:

          Yes. Article IV, section 7 of the Missouri Constitution: “The governor shall have power to grant reprieves, commutations and pardons, after conviction, for all offenses except treason and cases of impeachment, upon such conditions and with such restrictions and limitations as he may deem proper, subject to provisions of law as to the manner of applying for pardons. The power to pardon shall not include the power to parole.”

        2. avatar Vic Nighthorse says:

          I don’t know. It really was a question.

        3. avatar FedUp says:

          Thank you.
          So the process is the punishment, and Gardner is going to drag the process out as long as possible.

        4. avatar Miner49er says:

          More pesky facts from our friend Hannibal.

          Peanuts for all your elephants!

      2. avatar Missouri_Mule Esquire Emeritus says:

        Yes, the city of St. Louis is a “county” i.e. it has home rule.

        1. avatar pieceworker says:

          Just to keep you confused. The city of St Louis is a separate entity from the county of St Louis. I assume the commenter is correct that it is legally a county.
          Just for fun: back in the days when we first starting allowing right turns on red lights, such turns were allowed in one but not the other. It is often hard to tell when you are in the city and when you are in the county.

  7. avatar Anymouse says:

    The tampering charge is stupid. It’s the same crime whether you menace with a real gun, a disabled gun, or a fake gun. If a reasonable person would think you’re pointing a gun at them, it’s all the same. Holding up a liquor store with an airsoft is still armed robbery.

    1. avatar Miner49er says:


      1. avatar Darkman says:

        And could well get you shot.

    2. avatar FedUp says:

      From what I understand, the statute in Missouri that she’s charged under does draw that distinction.

    3. avatar Elmer Fudd says:

      Missouri law on menacing does make the destinction between an operable verses an inoperable firearm.

      The prosecutor is toast. Tampering with evidence to obstruct a defense is a felony:,is%20a%20class%20E%20felony.

  8. avatar TP says:

    What about all the legal fees to the attorneys, court, etc?

  9. avatar Missouri_Mule says:

    Wait! Don’t drop the case till I get a Christmas card!

  10. avatar Hannibal says:

    “We’ll let it play out and see how this all comes out in the courts, but I stand by what I said,” Parsons continued.

    He never said he “would pardon them.” As usual, the AP gets it wrong. So saying he stands by what he said doesn’t mean anything beyond the conditional statement he previously made.

  11. avatar Dog of War says:

    The thing that really disgusts me about this that even thought these people will be pardons they’re going to have to deal with the ride of going through the court system. Including who knows how many tends of thousands of dollars they’re probably going to have to spend just to defend themselves. Not to mention they’ve already been slandered in the media for the ‘high crime’ of owning a nice house and choosing to prevent violent marxist psychopaths from destroying it.

  12. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

    For anyone who doesn’t think we are in a soft war this is the wake up event. These were the people of the left before this happened to them.

    1. avatar Miner49er says:

      Interesting, do you think they are ‘people of the left’ because they support Donald Trump?

      “What’s True
      Over the past 20 years, Mark McCloskey has made political contributions to both Democratic and Republican political campaigns. Between 2004 and 2012, FEC records show he donated to Democratic candidates, and more recently McCloskey has donated to a few Democrats on the local level.

      What’s False
      However, the majority of McCloskey’s political donations since 2012 have gone to Republicans, including many contributions to U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.”

  13. avatar Gregory Peter DuPont says:

    It occurs to me, that if you’ll be treated the same for warning off a hostile crowd that is both trespassing AND signaling their violent intentions towards you and yours; that you may as well go right to stacking bodies..
    I hope that the Progressitard Left’s Pet DAs enjoy what they’re asking for

  14. avatar Daniel Silverman says:

    I am still trying to figure out how this would work.
    They basically were charged with brandishing and related brandishing crimes.
    They were on their own private property.
    In fact the rioters had to break down a gate that was clearly marked as private property.

    1. avatar Miner49er says:

      “Videos and photographs show the couple pacing on their Portland Place property, periodically pointing the weapons at the crowd

      Author: Sara Machi
      Published: 12:57 PM CDT July 15, 2020
      ST. LOUIS — When a crowd of protesters walked a nearly mile-long route to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home Sunday night to demand her resignation, it is actually the actions of Central West End homeowners Mark and Patricia McCloskey that garnered the most national attention in the hours that followed.

      Videos and photographs show the couple pacing on their Portland Place property, periodically pointing the weapons at the crowd as Mark McCloskley repeatedly yells at protesters to leave the private property.

      “It was a huge and frightening crowd. They had broken the gate and were coming at us,” Mark McCloskey told 5 On Your Side, explaining the videos that show him and his wife aiming a rifle and pistol respectively at the crowd.

      But video from early in the incident shows a man holding open the left side of the gate while the right door is fully intact and upright.“

  15. avatar Mort (actual AZ) says:

    This right here is what checks and balances is all about.

    God bless America. Be safe!

  16. avatar Nope says:

    So let me get this straight. The prosecution tampered with edvience and is now charging the defendants with tampering with edvience?

    Kangaroo cort any one?

    At the least this is railroading/malishious prosecution.

  17. avatar Datahut says:

    Looks like if you’re a rich enough lawyer with connections, you’re above the law.

  18. avatar anonymous4goodreason says:

    I have to disagree with those who say the PA tampered with the evidence. The weapon was examined and found to be inoperable and a report was created acknowledging that. The weapon was then reassembled correctly and and fired to show that if assembled properly it would fire. That would seem like normal procedure and quite legal as long as the original report was filed as evidence. The PA does have a tough road to hoe if she’s going to prove evidence tampering by the McCloskeys though.

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