St. Louis, MO – A St. Louis couple greeted a group of about 500 protesters with guns after the mob broke through a locked gate into their Central West End neighborhood as they marched toward the mayor’s house on Sunday evening (video below).
Mark McCloskey, 63, said he was having dinner outside with his family at about 7:30 p.m. on June 28 when they heard the mob approaching, KMOV reported.
The McCloskeys live in a gated community well marked with “Private Street” and “No Trespassing” signs.
But that didn’t stop determined protesters who were angry with St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson for releasing the names of activists who had sent her letters demanding she defund the police department, KMOV reported.
Krewson lives down the street from the McCloskeys.
“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 for our lives,” McCloskey said.
So he and his wife, 61-year-old Patricia McCloskey, grabbed weapons and went to defend their home and property, KMOV reported.
Videos posted to social media by participants showed protesters breaking the locked wrought iron pedestrian gate into the tony private neighborhood and marching right in.
“This is all private property,” McCloskey explained to KMOV. “There are no public sidewalks or public streets. I was terrified that we’d be murdered within seconds, our house would be burned down, our pets would be killed. We were all alone facing an angry mob.”
Video showed McCloskey standing on his porch facing off with protests, a semi-automatic rifle in his hands.
His wife was holding a small pistol.
The video showed he repeatedly told the protesters to get out and that they were trespassing on private property.
Neither of the McCloskeys appeared to be concerned about what direction their weapons were pointing, the video showed.
In the video, protesters reacted with shock to the sight of the armed couple and others can be heard encouraging them to keep walking and not engage.
However, some of the protesters stayed in front of the McCloskeys home antagonizing and challenging them, yelling obscenities and threats, the video showed.
The group eventually made its way down the street to the home of the mayor, KMOV reported.
They painted the word “resign” in giant letters on the street in front of her home.
Afterwards the McCloskeys filed a police report about the trespassing incident with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, the Associated Press reported.
They told officers that some of the protesters were armed.
The McCloskeys have a personal injury law practice together that is also based in the Central West End, KMOV reported.
The home which they planned to defend is valued at $1.15 million and was featured in St. Louis Magazine, the Associated Press reported.
Police were investigating the incident as trespassing and assault by intimidation against the McCloskeys.
No charges had been filed against the couple as of Monday, but St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner said her office was investigating the incident, KMOV reported.
“I am alarmed at the events that occurred over the weekend, where peaceful protestors were met by guns and a violent assault. We must protect the right to peacefully protest, and any attempt to chill it through intimidation or threat of deadly force will not be tolerated,” Gardner tweeted.
Watch the incident unfold in the video below. WARNING – Obscene Language: