The St. Louis Circuit Attorney is considering her options after being told she can release the full agreement which led to charges being dropped against former Governor Eric Greitens.
Two of the seven conditions in a stipulation for dismissal of a felony computer tampering charge against Greitens have been sealed.
The office of Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner confirmed to Missourinet that she asked Attorney General Josh Hawley Monday to determine if she could unseal those two conditions and disclose the full agreement.
Assistant Attorney General John Sauer told Gardner Tuesday that the full release would be legal as it would constitute an open record under Missouri law.
Gardner’s office told Missourinet that it’s considering its legal options for releasing the entire agreement that was approved by St. Louis Circuit Judge Rex Burlison last week.
The felony charge which accused Greitens of misusing a charity donor list was dropped as part of the agreement that called for Greitens to resign. He left office last Friday but still faces legal and ethical challenges on several other fronts.
The five currently unsealed conditions in the stipulation for dismissal require concessions from both sides in the case.
Among other things, the Circuit Attorney’s office was called on to dismiss the computer tampering charges upon receiving notification of the governor’s resignation from the secretary of state, and at that point, could not refile those charges.
The document stipulates that the circuit attorney realizes the trial could be expensive with no guaranteed outcome and that both parties agree that resolving the issue quickly is in the best interest of justice.
It further requires Greitens’ lawyers to drop their request to disqualify Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner from the proceeding and calls on them to release her, her office and any hired consultants from civil liability. The defense had accused private investigator William Tisaby of perjury and Gardner of allowing the offense in a previous case.
Greitens attorneys initially approached Gardner’s office to propose a deal in exchange for his resignation.
The stipulation for dismissal had closed out the felony computer tampering charge Greitens faced for allegedly obtaining a donor list from his former charity without consent and using it for campaign purposes.
At the time, the case had been continued as a grand jury was still investigating the charge.
The stipulation doesn’t affect Judge Rex Burlison’s ability to penalize Circuit Attorney Gardner. Burlison determined sanctions were in order following missteps in an earlier case that led to the perjury accusation and confusion over the whereabouts of a key video.
In that case, Greitens was alleged to have taken and transmitted a nonconsensual photo of a woman in a state of undress and then to have threatened to distribute the photo if the woman talked about the encounter.
The charge of felony invasion of privacy was dropped when Judge Burlison ruled that Circuit Attorney Gardner could be called as a witness by the defense.
The case was moved to Kansas City where a special prosecutor could still refile the charge against Greitens. A court date has been set there for July 2nd.
A lawsuit against Greitens over his office’s use of an app that erases text messages is still unresolved. A judge had ordered information concerning the Confide app turned over to plaintiffs in the case by 1 p.m. Monday. KOMU-TV reported the plaintiffs filed a request to have Greitens sanctioned for failing to do so later Monday.
Also, a Cole County Circuit Court judge will hear arguments Thursday from an attorney for Greitens seeking to block the release of documents from his secretive political non-profit organization.
The judge had ordered those documents to be turned over to a House committee that’s been investigating Greitens. The attorney, Catherine Hanaway, contends the committee is no longer authorized to demand the records because Greitens has resigned as governor.
The House has indicated it still wants the documents the committee subpoenaed, although the committee canceled all hearings in its investigation once Greitens announced his resignation over a week ago.