ST. LOUIS ( -- St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner has been dismissed as the prosecutor in the case against Mark and Patricia McCloskey, according to court records.

Kim Gardner, McCloskeys side-by-side

The McCloskeys had previously filed a motion to remove Gardner and her office from the case, citing fundraising emails Gardner sent during her re-election campaign that mentioned the McCloskeys.

In those emails, Gardner mentioned the criticisms of her office made by President Donald Trump and Governor Mike Parson, saying they were “fighting for the two who pointed guns at citizens during the Black Lives Matter protests.”

The McCloskeys were indicted on one count each of unlawful use of a weapon for pointing guns at protestors June 28 when a crowd marched down Portland Place, a private street in the Central West End, on their way to demonstrate against St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson.

[RELATED: Central West End couple explains why they pointed guns at protesters who demanded Krewson's resignation]

Parson has said he would pardon the McCloskeys if they were to be found guilty.

The couple was also charged with tampering with physical evidence, a felony. That tampering charge stems from a pistol, seen in Patricia McCloskey’s hands, which was turned over to police days after the incident. The indictments say the couple altered it, saying doing so "impaired and obstructed the prosecution."

[RELATED: Indictments allege McCloskeys altered pistol and 'obstructed prosecution']

 Nine protesters received citations for trespassing, but the City Counselor’s office declined to pursue the citations.

The McCloskeys have pleaded not guilty, and their attorney Joel Schwartz has called the case “persecution.”

[RELATED: McCloskeys say they support BLM and fight for civil rights, but were 'victim of a mob']

The emails in question were reportedly sent by Gardner’s campaign 48 hours after she announced charges against the couple.

Were she to be removed, a special prosecutor would be appointed to the case.

Copyright 2020 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved

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