Mark McCloskey Loses Again in Bid to Reclaim Guns

Judge Joan Moriarty rules that McCloskey has no right to the guns that he surrendered in a plea agreement

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Mark McCloskey has lost his battle to get his guns back. - REUBEN HEMMER
Mark McCloskey has lost his battle to get his guns back.

Mark McCloskey lost his U.S. senate race. Now he’ll lose his guns too.

On Wednesday, St. Louis Circuit Judge Joan Moriarty ruled that McCloskey and his wife, Patricia, will not be returned the guns they pointed at peaceful protesters in June 2020. 

The judge’s order concludes a lawsuit McCloskey filed against Missouri and city officials last August. The suit unsuccessfully argued that the McCloskeys had a right to keep their guns after Missouri Governor Mike Parson pardoned them.

The pair had been charged after a widely publicized incident in which they pointed guns at Black Lives Matter protesters walking past their Central West End mansion. The McCloskeys, both lawyers in their 60s, originally agreed to forfeit their weapons in exchange for felony charges of unlawful use of a weapon and evidence tampering to be reduced to misdemeanors.

But after the governor’s pardon in August 2021, Mark McCloskey filed suit in an effort to get their Colt AR-15 rifle and a Bryco .380-caliber pistol back, along with $872.50 in fines he paid. He argued the governor's pardon “absolved” them of “all wrongdoing” and rendered all judgments and dispositive orders “a nullity.” 

In her order, Moriarty essentially said no can do — the governor’s pardon had no bearing on the terms of the gun wielders' plea agreement and that the McCloskeys must stick to their end of the bargain. 

The court, Moriarty wrote, “should not be expected to return the weapons used in the commission of a crime that were voluntarily relinquished as part of a negotiated plea of guilty.” 

The loss of this lawsuit is the latest blow to Mark McCloskey, who tried and failed to ride the wave of attention his ridiculousness earned him all the way to the U.S. Capitol. With 3 percent of the vote, however, Missourians spoke — we didn’t want him in the Senate. And we don’t want him to have guns either, unless they’re guns of the beefy variety.

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About The Author

Monica Obradovic

Monica Obradovic is a staff writer for the Riverfront Times.
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