Monday night, Mark McCloskey appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show and hinted that “revelations” about his case would soon come out. He and his wife, Patricia, face felony charges for using firearms — without firing a shot — to defend their home from protesters in St. Louis in late June. Missouri has a broad Castle Doctrine, but Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner has ignored that in announcing Class D felony charges against them.
Earlier on Monday, I took a look at the case against them and was surprised to learn that both of their guns were likely not capable of being fired at the time of the incident. Mrs. McCloskey’s handgun was described as a “prop” they had used in a trial (they’re both attorneys). Mr. McCloskey’s rifle was reportedly not loaded during the confrontation and there was no ammunition found in their home.
This is relevant because the guns have to be “readily capable of lethal use” according to Missouri law.
If neither gun was readily capable of lethal use, there is no case to prosecute them.
In Missouri, police and prosecutors must prove that a weapon is “readily” capable of lethal use when it used in the type of crime with which the McCloskeys have been charged.
At the request of Assistant Circuit Attorney Chris Hinckley, crime lab staff members field stripped the handgun and found it had been assembled incorrectly. Specifically, the firing pin spring was put in front of the firing pin, which was backward, and made the gun incapable of firing, according to the documents.
Firearms experts then put the gun back together, per Hinckley’s request, in the correct order and test-fired it, finding that it worked, according to the documents.
Crime lab workers photographed the disassembly and reassembly of the gun, according to the documents.
Follow this link to see what appears to be the crime lab’s write-up about the handgun. It clearly states that the gun arrived at the lab inoperable and the lab workers stripped and reassembled the gun, correcting the firing pin issue, and successfully test-fired it.
If it’s true that the gun was inoperable during the incident at the McCloskeys’ home, Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner or her office may be framing the McCloskeys in order to prosecute them.
According to the record, Assistant Circuit Attorney Chris Hinckley ordered the disassembly, reassembly, and test firing, assuming the record is authentic — and we have no reason to assume it is not. If true, he knew the gun was inoperable when it arrived at the lab and should have reported this to Gardner, his boss. Did he? What did Gardner know and when did she know it? Did Gardner file charges with the knowledge that the handgun at the heart of the case was incapable of firing?
And what about the rifle Mark McCloskey was holding? Police reported finding no ammunition at the McCloskeys’ home when they confiscated it, and that it was not loaded. Was it ever loaded? Has it ever even been fired prior to being in police custody?
Gardner is suddenly hiding behind the “I can’t comment on a pending case” ruse, which hasn’t stopped her from commenting on this case multiple times before. She’s not commenting when it suits her not to comment.