Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) vowed on Wednesday to pardon the St. Louis couple who sparked a national debate after they waved guns at Black Lives Matter protesters outside their home this summer, if they’re convicted, The Hill reports.
Mark and Patricia McCloskey were indicted on charges related to the incident the day before.
In a press briefing, Gov. Mike Parson said he “certainly” will pardon Mark and Patricia McCloskey if they are convicted on counts of exhibiting a weapon and tampering with evidence.
“We’ll let it play out and see how this all comes out in the courts, but I stand by what I said,” Parsons continued.
“A grand jury in St. Louis indicted the McCloskeys on the charges earlier on Tuesday. The couple had already been charged with felony unlawful use of a weapon in July and the jury leveled the evidence tampering charge against the couple this week,” according to The Hill.
Back in July, the governor spoke out in defense of the couple and said he was prepared to issue pardons to the McCloskeys after circuit attorney Kim Gardner launched an investigation into the June 28 incident.
When asked by reporters at the time if he’d consider pardoning the couple if they were charged over the incident, Parson said, “I think that’s exactly what would happen.” He also said then that he thinks the couple “did what they legally should do” during the incident
The charges come after the McCloskeys, protecting their home, pointed an AR-15 and a semiautomatic handgun at BLM protesters as they allegedly broke into Portland Place, a gated private street, on their way to Mayor Lyda Krewson’s residence on nearby Lake Avenue.
The protesters had been calling on the mayor to resign after she read aloud activists’ personal information on a livestream.
The McCloskeys have been subjects of international news coverage over the summer. In an interview with local CBS affiliate KMOV, the couple said they pulled out their guns in their own defense and that they were afraid for their lives. However, one of the leaders of the demonstration, Rasheen Aldridge, has said the protest had been peaceful despite the couple’s actions.