Missouri governor charged with invasion of privacy stemming from affair

Missouri Governor Eric Greitens had allegedly taken a compromising photo of a woman he was having an affair with before he was elected in 2016.
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens had allegedly taken a compromising photo of a woman he was having an affair with before he was elected in 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

MISSOURI (BLOOMBERG) - Missouri Governor Eric Greitens was charged with invasion of privacy for allegedly taking a compromising photo of a woman he was having an affair with before he was elected in 2016.

Greitens, 43, was indicted by a St. Louis grand jury under a state law that makes it a felony to transmit on a computer a nude or partly nude photo of someone taken without their permission.

He was taken into custody and released Thursday (Feb 22) by a judge without bail and allowed to travel throughout the US, according to a spokesman for St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner.

His lawyer quickly filed a request for dismissal of the case, saying the relationship with the woman was consensual.

"The charges against my client are baseless and unfounded," Edward Dowd, the governor's attorney, said in a statement. "My client is absolutely innocent. We will be filing a motion to dismiss."

Greitens, a first-term Republican, announced his candidacy for governor in 2015, campaigning on a platform centered around ethics reform.

Greitens said that while he acknowledged making a mistake, he didn't commit a crime. "With today's disappointing and misguided political decision, my confidence in our prosecutorial system is shaken, but not broken," he said in a statement. "I know this will be righted soon."