The Missouri Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling that removed St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner from the McCloskey case – in which the married couple this past summer armed themselves to protect their home as Black Lives Matter protesters broking into the gated community during a demonstration.
Videos and pictures of the armed lawyer couple outside the mansion went viral.
Gardner was removed from the case because she fundraised off the incident – including sending emails that said Missouri GOP Gov. Mike Parson and former President Trump were “fighting for the two who pointed guns at citizens during the Black Lives Matter protests.”
The email resulted in the courts ruling Gardner should be disqualified from the case because her personal interest in it would jeopardize a fair trial.
“This is what we expected based on the careful, thoughtful ruling from Judge Tom Clark,” Gardner attorney Joel Schwartz said after Tuesday’s ruling by Missouri’s highest court. Still, Gardner argued the emails did not indicate how she might pursue an outcome to the McCloskey case.
Mark and Patricia McCloskey were charged with unlawful use of a weapon in addition to evidence tampering. They pleaded not guilty to the felony charges.
Richard Callahan, a U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri under President Obama will now serve as the special prosecutor.