Louis Judge: Charge Against Gov. Eric Greitens Stands

22 April, 2018, 06:05 | Author: Charlene Valdez
  • Judge rules on Greitens' felony dismissal request

After a motion to dismiss the invasion of privacy charge against Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, a judge has declared his May 14 trial is still on.

Attorneys for Greitens say a private investigator hired by the prosecutor has repeatedly lied to the court.

"These rules are not mere rules of etiquette", the judge said.

Greitens, who is facing growing pressure to resign, was indicted in February after allegations arose that he took a photo of a semi-nude woman and threatened to release it to silence her about their 2015 affair.

Missouri's top Republican legislative leaders abandoned fellow GOP Gov. Eric Greitens on Tuesday, calling on him to resign instead of continuing to fight allegations that he illegally took advantage of both a charity he founded and a woman with whom he had an affair.

Defense attorneys have accused Gardner of withholding evidence.

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Also Monday, the judge issued an order requiring the woman to provide the defense with "any phone now in her possession on which she received or has at any time been able to view the text messages from (her ex-husband) as referenced in (the woman's) interview conducted by William Don Tisaby in January 2018". As of this writing, no one responded to our request.

Gardner's office hired Tisaby rather than relying on law enforcement, and prosecutors have blamed Tisaby for the delays in handing over evidence. Each time, defense attorneys said, the missing evidence was helpful to their case because it called the woman's credibility into question. They said the defense claims were part of a public relations strategy, and in a statement late Wednesday called claims of a perjury investigation part of the "bullying efforts" of Greitens, his lawyers and his public relations team.

Burlison said that would only be appropriate "where there is fundamental unfairness" that was not capable of being remedied.

"If further conduct is brought to this court's attention, this motion will be reconsidered", Burlison said. Both are expected next week, said Susan Ryan, a spokeswoman for the circuit attorney's office.

"Their tactic to attack the prosecutor, versus focus on the crime itself, is not an uncommon defense strategy", Ryan said.

Prosecutors said the woman who had an affair with Greitens had been "wholly consistent in the core of her testimony".

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"At the outset of this process, we said the governor needed to be forthright and accountable for his actions".

Tisaby has not returned phone and email messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

The once-rising Republican star is now going up against Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley. Claire McCaskill and has faced an onslaught of Democratic ads trying to link him to Greitens.

He claims Greitens used a donor list from his veteran's charity, the Mission Continues, to raise money for his gubernatorial campaign. Hawley turned the evidence over to Gardner for a possible indictment.

During discussion of a previous, unsuccessful, motion to dismiss, prosecutors said they would re-file the charge if it was dismissed.

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