US couple who threatened BLM protesters once made children cry after destroying their bee hives

Business Insider US
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - MAY 26: Protesters march on Hiaw
Protesters march on Hiawatha Avenue while decrying the killing of George Floyd on May 26, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Four Minneapolis police officers have been fired after a video taken by a bystander was posted on social media showing Floyds neck being pinned to the ground by an officer as he repeatedly said, I canâ??t breathe. Floyd was later pronounced dead while in police custody after being transported to Hennepin County Medical Center. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)
  • On June 28, St. Louis couple Mark and Patricia McCloskey drew national attention when they brandished guns at Black Lives Matter protesters walking down their street.
  • An article by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch revealed the McCloskeys, both personal injury attorneys, have "nearly constantly sued other people and ordered people off their property," threatened neighbours at gunpoint and more.
  • One incident in 2013 involved Mark, the neighbouring Jewish Central Reform Congregation, and beehives that he smashed. He threatened to sue the synagogue, obtain a restraining order, and seek legal fees if the mess wasn't cleaned up.
  • The beehives were part of the Hebrew school's curriculum, and the congregation was planning on harvesting honey to partake in a Rosh Hashanah tradition. The children cried as a result, according to the temple's rabbi.
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The McCloskeys have been receiving more and more attention since they first went viral at the end of June for brandishing their guns at Black Lives Matter protesters who marched down their street - even the President retweeted a video of the couple.

They claim they support Black Lives Matter, and instead blamed the actions of a few agitators for their fear. "The Black Lives Matters movement is here to stay, its the right message, and it is about time," Albert Watkins, their attorney, said in a statement.

"The McCloskeys want to make sure no one thinks less of BLM, its message and the means it is employing to get its message out because of the actions of a few white individuals who tarnished a peaceful protest."

A prosecutor is currently investigating if the McCloskeys broke state law. As Insider previously reported, Missouri law says a person "commits the offense of unlawful use of weapons" if "he or she knowingly exhibits, in the presence of one or more persons, any weapon readily capable of lethal use in an angry or threatening manner."

An investigation done by the St. Louis Dispatch-Post revealed that the McCloskeys have a long history of legal action, conflicts with their neighbours, and even threatened to obtain a restraining order against the Jewish synagogue next door.

The article explains that, in 2013, the Jewish Central Reform Congregation constructed beehives just outside the McCloskey's mansion's northern wall. Their plan was to harvest the honey with the congregation's children to partake in the traditional Rosh Hashanah tradition of eating apples and honey to ensure a "sweet new year."

However, these plans were ruined when Mark McCloskey destroyed the beehives and left a note stating, among other things, that the "structure constitutes a trespass," and threatened that, if the beehives were cleaned up, "a restraining order will be obtained, and we will seek damages and attorneys' fees."

"The children were crying in school," Rabbi Susan Talve told the Dispatch. "It was part of our curriculum."

The McCloskeys have also had various confrontations with other neighbours. Patricia was impeached from the neighbourhood's trustee association in 1992 when the other trustees accused her of being homophobic. She was fighting to enforce a rule that prohibited unmarried couples from moving into Portland Place - her husband claimed it wasn't about gay couples, just any unmarried couple.

"They've always been part of the problem, never part of the solution," said one neighbour, Robert Dolgin.

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