In June, a Missouri couple sat down to eat a family meal outside of their home. As they were eating their meal, they realized that a mob of rioters was heading down their street. Afraid for their lives, they went inside their homes and came out with legally-owned firearms. Eventually, the rioters left their property, but not before a media frenzy was kicked off.
Soon after the incident, videos of the “gun-toting” couple went viral. Eventually, the Saint Louis Attorney, Kimberly Gardner, issued a statement saying that the couple engaged “peaceful protesters” with “guns and a violent assault.” Law enforcement issued a search on the couple’s property and left with the AR-15 that the husband can be seen holding in the video. Later, the wife turned in her pistol to the police.
Governor Has Indicated He May Pardon the Couple
Missouri Governor Parson has stated that he is considering a pardon in the couple’s case. He even said that “Kim Gardner is making the situation worse - more political.” He also indicated that he believed that Gardner has made crime levels worse since she took office. In July, he stated that given what he knew about the case, he would pardon the couple if the prosecutor went through with criminal charges against the couple. The president has also stated that the investigation into the couple is a disgrace, and that the couple has the right to protect their property.
The Department of Justice Could Open a Civil Rights Investigation
This case has caused a media uproar that has not escaped the attention of the White House. Josh Hawley, an American lawyer and junior State Senator from Missouri, recently stated that he asked the Department of Justice to open a civil rights case into the couple’s case. The senator contends that the city attorney has targeted law-abiding citizens who were exercising their rights, protected by the constitution.
Gardner Has Stated That She Will Continue with the Prosecution
Gardner remains undeterred in her prosecution of the couple, however. She just won her primary challenge and has said she will not back down from prosecuting the case. She stated last Thursday that “while they continue to play politics with the handling of this matter, spreading misinformation and distorting the truth, I refuse to do so.”
The Missouri constitution gives a governor the right to issue convicted criminals a reprieve, commutation, or pardon. When a governor issues a full pardon, all of the rights of citizenships will be restored, as well as the punitive collateral consequences that result from the conviction. Typically, governors only issue pardons after a defendant has been convicted of the crime. It seems likely that the governor is putting pressure on the city attorney to dismiss the charges. Only time will tell whether she goes through with prosecuting this couple for simply defending their personal property rights against a mob of rioters.
Contact Our Experienced Lawyers
If you have been charged with a crime for defending your life or personal property rights, you need an experienced lawyer. When you need an attorney, experience matters. Contact Glasgow & Olsson today to schedule your initial consultation.