ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis couple who made national headlines after brandishing guns at protesters walking down the street spoke during the opening night of the Republican National Convention.
Mark and Patricia McCloskey, both lawyers, spoke in a recorded message at the convention from St. Louis. The couple defended their use of their weapons.
"America is such a great country that you not only have the right to own a gun and use it to defend yourself, but thousands of Americans will offer you free advice on how to use it. At least that’s what we experienced," Patricia said.
"Not a single person in the out-of-control mob you saw at our house was charged with a crime. But you know who was? We were. They’ve actually charged us with a felony for daring to defend our home," Mark said.
On July 20, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner filed charges against the couple for brandishing their guns at protesters. Both were charged with one count of unlawful use of a weapon.
The McCloskeys also referred to Cori Bush, who recently defeated 10-term congressman William Lacy Clay Jr. in the Democratic primary for Missouri's 1st Congressional District, which is made up of St. Louis city and parts of St. Louis County.
"The liberal activist leading a mob to our neighborhood stood outside of our home with a bullhorn screaming, “You can’t stop the revolution!” Just weeks later, that same activist won the Democrat nomination to hold a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives," Mark McCloskey said.
Bush responded on Twitter Monday night.
"The McCloskeys tried to villianize me @ the RNC tonight. They can call me whatever they want—I’m used to it. People have called us everything you can imagine since we started protesting in Ferguson. It didn’t stop us then & it won’t stop us now."
5 On Your Side reached out to Bush for further comment. We have not yet heard back.
After watching the McCloskeys’ speech Monday night, one of their neighbors, Tim Noonan, told 5 On Your Side, “There was no threat, except the threat that comes from frightened elites out of touch with the reality that resides a few inches outside their gate.” Noonan was one of about two dozen of the McCloskeys’ neighbors who signed a letter denouncing their action after the June 28 incident.
Below is the full text of their message at the RNC
Mark: Good evening, America. We are Mark and Patty McCloskey. We’re speaking to you tonight from St. Louis, Missouri, where just weeks ago you may have seen us defending our home as a mob of protesters descended on our neighborhood.
Patricia: America is such a great country that you not only have the right to own a gun and use it to defend yourself, but thousands of Americans will offer you free advice on how to use it. At least that’s what we experienced.
But in all seriousness, what you saw happen to us could just as easily happen to any of you who are watching from quiet neighborhoods around our country. And that’s what we want to speak to you about tonight.
Mark: That’s exactly right.
Whether it’s defunding the police, ending cash bail so criminals can be released back out on the streets the same day to riot again or encouraging anarchy on our streets, it seems as if Democrats no longer view the government’s job as protecting honest citizens from criminals, but rather protecting criminals from honest citizens.
Not a single person in the out-of-control mob you saw at our house was charged with a crime. But you know who was? We were. They’ve actually charged us with a felony for daring to defend our home.
On top of that, consider this: The liberal activist leading a mob to our neighborhood stood outside of our home with a bullhorn screaming, “You can’t stop the revolution!” Just weeks later, that same activist won the Democrat nomination to hold a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The radicals are not content just marching in the streets. They want to walk the halls of Congress. They want power. This is Joe Biden’s party. These are the people who will be in charge.
Patricia: They are not satisfied with spreading the chaos and violence into our communities, they want to abolish the suburbs all-together by ending single-family home zoning. This forced rezoning would bring crime, lawlessness and low-quality apartments into thriving suburban neighborhoods. President Trump smartly ended this government overreach, but Joe Biden wants to bring it back.
These are the policies that are coming to a neighborhood near you. So make no mistake: No matter where you live, your family will not be safe in the radical Democrats’ America.
Mark: At this moment in history, if you stand up for yourself and for the values our country was founded on, the mob--spurred on by their allies in the media--will try to destroy you.
You’ve seen us on your TV screens and Twitter feeds. You know we’re not the kind of people who back down. Thankfully, neither is Donald Trump.
President Trump will defend the God-given right of every American to protect their homes and their families.
But more than that, Trump’s vision for America is a country where you have an opportunity to work hard and build the life you dream of. With a job you love. With your children being educated in great schools. In a community where your family can play in the backyard without fear, worship in a church without shame, and express your beliefs without retribution.
Trump brought us the greatest economy our country had ever seen. The Democrats have brought us nothing but destruction.
Patricia: When we don’t have basic safety and security in our communities, we will never be free to build a brighter future for ourselves, for our children, and for our country.
That’s what’s at stake in this election. And that’s why we must re-elect Donald Trump.
God bless you, God bless the President, and God bless the United States.