In a dramatic turn of events on day three of jury selection, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner dropped the felony invasion of privacy case against Governor Eric Greitens. Gardner says she wants a special prosecutor to try the case and plans to re-file charges.
If that happens Gardner could be called as a witness. Through the process leading up to the trial, the defense has accused the prosecution of misconduct involving a recorder malfunction, resulting in the judge agreeing to sanctions.
One of Greitens’ lawyers, Jim Bennett, told reporters at the courthouse on Monday the governor would have won the trial.
“Everybody understands why this case was dismissed. It’s because there was no evidence and we were going to have an absolute full-out acquittal based on the evidence,” Bennett said.
Greitens told reporters on the courthouse steps that the experience has been humbling.
“I have emerged from it a changed man,” said Greitens. I think that in all of our lives we have to deal with pain. I think that if we work thru it in the right way, we can work thru pain and find wisdom.”
Statement from Gardner’s office:
Since January, Governor Greitens and his defense team have taken a scorched-earth legal and media strategy and relentlessly attacked the intentions, character and integrity of every person involved in investigating the Governor’s behavior including Missouri House Committee members, the Attorney General, the Circuit Attorney and her team, his victim, her family and those who have called for his resignation.
On February 22, 2018, a Grand Jury indicted Governor Greitens on Felony Invasion of Privacy. The Circuit Attorney has done everything in her power to remain focused on the facts and the truth of this matter. The Circuit Attorney and her team are ready, willing and able to go to trial this week on behalf of the people of the state of Missouri and Mr. Greitens’ victim.
Last week, Governor Greitens made a motion to include the Circuit Attorney as a defense witness. A defendant who wishes to call a prosecutor as a witness must demonstrate a compelling and legitimate reason to do so. Governor Greitens has produced no compelling reason to include the Circuit Attorney as a witness for any purpose. The defense team knows that the tactic of endorsing the Circuit Attorney as a witness is part of their ongoing effort to distract people from the defendant’s actions that brought about both the felony Invasion of Privacy and Computer Tampering charges against him.
Greitens was charged in January for allegedly taking and transmitting a non-consensual graphic photo woman with whom he had an affair before he was elected. Greitens admitted to the affair but has denied any criminal wrongdoing.
Written by Jill Enders and Alisa Nelson
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