August 8, 2020

Protesters return to St. Louis area where couple drew guns

Several hundred protesters made a peaceful return trip Friday to the St. Louis mansion owned by a white couple whose armed defense of their home during an earlier demonstration earned them both scorn and support.

Protesters marched along the busy public boulevard called Kingshighway, which intersects with Portland Place, a private street that is the site of the Renaissance palazzo-style home of Mark McCloskey, 61, and his 63-year-old wife, Patricia.

Chanting protesters on Friday stopped at the gate just outside the McCloskeys’ home for about 15 minutes. The gate that closes the private street to non-residents and extra metal barriers blocked the entrance to Portland Place, where the protesters had walked earlier in the week on their way to the mayor’s home nearby.

Inside the gate, more than a dozen men in plain clothes walked the grounds and peered out from a second-floor balcony of the couple’s home. One protester briefly straddled an iron gate as if he was going to jump over, but did not. No one threw anything and no one behind the gates showed aggression. One man on the McCloskeys’ balcony clapped along with the chanting protesters.

The racially diverse crowd on Friday carried signs reading “Black Lives Matter,” “Defund the Police” and “No Justice, No Peace,” and chanted slogans including, “when Black lives are under attack, what do we do? Stand up, fight back,” and “this is what democracy looks like.”

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