A St. Louis prosecutor said Wednesday that she is dismissing felony computer-tampering charges against Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens (R), who announced his resignation on Tuesday amid multiple scandals that marred his once-promising political career. Prosecutors say Greitens took a compromising photo of a woman with whom he had an affair without her consent in 2015, before his election.
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens, who is also the author of Virginia Tech's 2015-17 common book "The Heart and the Fist", resigned on Tuesday over the scandal involving his former hairdresser that had dominated his term in office. That resulted in a felony invasion of privacy charge against Greitens in February.
In April, the local St. Louis prosecutor's office charged Greitens with another felony, alleging that he improperly used the donor list for a charity that he'd founded to raise money for his 2016 campaign.
"The last few months have been incredibly hard for me, for my family, for my team, for my friends, and for many, many people that I love", he said in an emotional televised statement.
Gardner's statement did not acknowledge the agreement between prosecutors and Greitens' defense team, St. Louis Public Radio notes.
So even if Greitens had skated on all legal charges, he would likely still have faced impeachment.
During the announcement, Greitens again said that he did not break any laws.
Greitens stated the last few months have been very hard for him. State Attorney General Josh Hawley, the frontrunner for the GOP senate nomination, has called for Greitens to resign.
"It's clear that for the forces that oppose us, there is no end in sight", he said.
Republican Lt. Gov. Mike Parson, who was elected separately, will succeed Greitens.
The woman's then-husband released a secretly recorded conversation in which she described the alleged incident. One of the open stipulations states that Greitens has agreed to release Gardner and everyone in her office from civil liability.
"I think a comeback is going to be kind of hard for this guy", Walling said.
He said Greitens lacks deep support among Missouri's Republican power brokers, and his acknowledged extramarital affair included claims of sexual misconduct.
A Missouri House committee was mulling bringing impeachment proceedings against him.
The Associated Press first reported in October 2016 that Greitens' campaign had obtained a list of individuals, corporations and other nonprofits that had given at least $1,000 to The Mission Continues. Greitens' attorney says the charge is "baseless and unfounded".
While admitting to the extramarital affair, Greitens insisted his failings were personal and did not rise to the level of a criminal offense.
Missouri Senator Roy Blunt, a Republican, said that Greitens had made the "best decision" possible.
Earlier Tuesday, a Cole County judge ruled that the former Navy SEAL must comply with subpoenas from a state House committee seeking information about his campaign fund and secretive donations given to the pro-Greitens nonprofit called A New Missouri.
"The politics of this entire circus around Governor Greitens has always been concerning", he said.