St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner struck back at President Donald Trump and Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) on Tuesday night after both attacked her for investigating the St. Louis couple that brandished their guns at protesters outside their home last month.
“Today, both the Governor and Donald Trump came after me for doing my job and investigating a case,” Gardner said in a written statement. “While they continue to play politics with the handling of this matter, spreading misinformation and distorting the truth, I refuse to do so.”
She also slammed Parson for speaking to Trump about her probe, saying it was “unbelievable” that the governor “would seek advice from one of the most divisive leaders in our generation to overpower the discretion of a locally elected prosector [sic].”
Allison Hawk, Gardner’s spokesperson, declined to tell TPM on Wednesday whether anyone in the Trump administration had contacted the prosecutor about her investigation into Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who pointed their firearms at the anti-police brutality protesters near their house who were peacefully marching toward the home of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson.
“We’re not commenting at this point, but the investigation continues,” Hawk told TPM over the phone on Wednesday.
The McCloskeys’ legal team did not respond to TPM’s request for comment.
Trump threw his support behind the McCloskeys in a pre-taped interview on Tuesday, claiming the couple was “going to be beat up badly” by protesters and that the house “was going to be totally ransacked and probably burned down.”
“It’s a disgrace,” he said of Gardner’s investigation.
During a press conference on the same day, Parson also defended the McCloskeys, who he argued “had every right to protect their property,” and accused Gardner of attempting to “attack law-abiding citizens.”
Parson told reporters that Trump communicated he was going to get involved in the case, though the governor did not explain what action the President said he would take.
“I think the President didn’t like what he was seeing, and the way people are being treated,” Parson said. “I think you’ll see some sort of actions.”
After images of Mark McCloskey aiming his rifle at the protesters with Patricia McCloskey swinging a puny pistol around next to him went viral (and instantly birthed many a meme) near the end of June, Mark told various news outlets that the protesters had broken the gate in front of the entrance of the neighborhood, causing him and his wife to fear for their lives.
“I really thought it was storming the Bastille, that we would be dead and the house would be burned and there was nothing we could do about it,” he said.
Footage of the incident does not show damaged property. The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is currently investigating the McCloskeys’ claims.