Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt filed a brief yesterday seeking to dismiss charges filed against Mark and Patricia McCloskey.
The McCloskeys armed themselves and pointed guns at Black Lives Matter protesters who broke down a gate and trespassed into their community last month.
St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner filed charges against the couple yesterday.
They were each charged with one count of unlawful use of a weapon, flourishing. The charge is a class D felony. They face anywhere from one to four years in prison and fines of up to $5,000 if convicted.
Within hours of that filing Attorney General Schmitt filed a brief to dismiss the charges on the grounds that their Second Amendment rights are being violated.
“The right to keep and bear arms is given the highest level of protection in our constitution and our laws, including the Castle Doctrine, which provides broad rights to Missourians who are protecting their property and lives from those who wish to do them harm,” Schmitt said in a prepared statement.
“Despite this, Circuit Attorney Gardner filed suit against the McCloskeys, who, according to published reports, were defending their property and safety. As Missouri’s Chief law enforcement officer, I won’t stand by while Missouri law is being ignored,” Schmitt added.
He also released a video statement on on the filing on Twitter last night:
In light of charges issued earlier today by Circuit Attorney Gardner, Attorney General Schmitt filed briefs supporting Missourians’ Second Amendment rights. Read the briefs here: https://t.co/88HpuhBTyz and here: https://t.co/ryPcirkZdX
WATCH -> pic.twitter.com/lQhrNHlmQh
— Attorney General Eric Schmitt (@AGEricSchmitt) July 20, 2020