After he and his wife pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges, Mark McCloskey said late last week that local officials will confiscate the AR-15 that he was holding during a viral incident during Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrations last year.
In an interview with Newsmax, McCloskey said that he wanted to keep his AR-15 so that he could either donate it or auction it off because it has “historical value.”
He and his wife, Patricia McCloskey, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges last week. He was fined $750 and his wife $2,000 for holding firearms as BLM protesters walked past their St. Louis home, according to prosecutors. Part of their plea agreement was to surrender their firearms.
McCloskey said that he has other firearms and is planning to “go out and buy another AR-15” as soon as the court clears him and he’s no longer under indictment. The silver-colored pistol that Patricia McCloskey was seen holding will be “melted down,” he said during the interview.
The AR-15 and the pistol were confiscated by local authorities last year, McCloskey said. When he attempted to recover the rifle, prosecutors said they didn’t want that to happen, leading to a judge siding with him. Now, the AR-15 “unfortunately” will be “melted down as well,” he said.
The couple had faced felony charges over the incident, which were dropped. The two told media outlets last year that they were threatened with violence by the BLM protesters and accused them of breaking down a gate leading into their community.
“We saved the city of St. Louis the expense of pursuing this nonsense, and then we’ll move forward,” McCloskey told Newsmax.
He noted that the charges were lowered to “a new crime, which basically said I purposely placed other people in the apprehension of imminent physical harm.”
The guilty plea to the new charges won’t affect McCloskey’s law license or his ability to run for public office. Earlier this year, he announced a bid for the U.S. Senate.
St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, who previously charged both of the McCloskeys with felonies, was removed from the case after a judge ruled in late 2020 that she appeared to have initiated prosecution against the two for political purposes.
McCloskey didn’t respond to a request for comment by press time.