Eric Greitens, the Republican governor of Missouri, is now under criminal investigation after being accused of blackmailing a mistress with a nude photo, the St. Louis circuit attorney announced on Thursday.
According to the mistress’ ex-husband, Greitens allegedly tied up the woman in his basement and took nude photos of her to use as blackmail if she ever talked about the affair.
On Wednesday, Greitens acknowledged the affair after local news station KMOV published a scathing investigation into the governor’s affair. He still continues to deny the blackmail accusations.
“The serious allegations against Missouri Governor Eric Greitens are very troubling,” Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner wrote in a statement on Thursday. “After further consideration, I have decided to launch an investigation into the alleged actions of Governor Greitens.”
Gardner added, “It is essential for residents of the City of St. Louis and our state to have confidence in their leaders. They must know that the Office of the Circuit Attorney will hold public officials accountable in the same manner as any other resident of our city. Both parties and the people of St. Louis deserve a thorough investigation of these allegations.”
KMOV has obtained a tape recording from the mistress’ ex-husband.
According to KMOV, the tape exhibited a dialogue between the ex-husband and the woman, in which she admitted the affair. Below is an excerpt:
Ex-Husband: “Tell me the truth. The truth. Only the truth.
Woman: So, on Saturday morning, before my first client, I did go to his house.
Ex-Husband: For the first time?
Woman: For the first time. Ever. Like I said, nothing, period, had ever happened or taken place until this snowball. This (expletive) tornado just happened. I know I brought this on.”
According to the tape, the women then went to Greitens’ house where he allegedly said to her:
“I’ll make you feel better. I’ll make you feel good. Come downstairs. I want to show you how to do a proper pull-up.”
The woman then added, “And I knew he was being sexual and I still let him. And he used some sort of tape, I don’t what it was, and taped my hands to these rings and then put a blindfold on me. He stepped back, I saw a flash through the blindfold and he said: ‘you’re never going to mention my name, otherwise there will be pictures of me everywhere.'”
Greitens’ lawyer released a statement saying, “There was no blackmail, and that claim is false…The outrageous claims of improper conduct regarding these almost-three year-ago events are a lie.”