The Republican governor has been accused of, among other things, blackmailing a woman.
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens announced his resignation on Tuesday, citing the stress on his family caused by months of scandal and talk of impeachment proceedings, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch is reporting. The Republican’s resignation will be effective as of 5:00 p.m. CDT Friday, paving the way for Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson to take his place.
In his resignation notice, Greitens claimed that he was the victim of “legal harassment.”
“The last few months have been incredibly difficult for me, for my team, for my friends, and many, many people whom I love.”
An Ever-Expanding Sex Scandal
The most salacious issue bedeviling the 44-year-old Greitens has been a sex scandal, first broken by the Post-Dispatch in January 2018. The same day the report hit the St. Louis newspaper, Greitens publicly admitted to the affair with his hair stylist in 2015, and called it a “deeply personal mistake.”
However, there was more to the story than just the affair. Later allegations emerged that stated that Greitens had duct taped the woman’s hands and taped them to exercise rings and blindfolded her. Though consensual, Greitens allegedly also took photos of the blindfolded and bound woman, and also allegedly threatened to blackmail her.
As The Kansas City Star reported in April, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner brought felony invasion of privacy charges against Greitens; those charges have since been dropped.
Felony Computer Fraud Charges Remain
The other big scandal plaguing Greitens also stems from actions that took place before he became Governor. Specifically, he’s been accused of improperly using a donor list from a charity he helped found in order to raise campaign money.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Greitens, himself a veteran, helped found The Mission Continues, an organization that helps veterans returning from war find meaning in politics and activism. Greitens allegedly obtained a list of donors to the organization and used that list to raise money for his campaign. That got him another set of felony charges, this time for computer fraud. Those charges remain, as of this writing, but Gardner suggested Tuesday that those charges may be going by the wayside.
“I have been in contact with the Governor’s defense team over the past several days. We have reached a fair and just resolution of the pending charges. We will provide more information tomorrow.”
In a statement, Missouri’s Attorney General Josh Hawley, also a Republican, said that Greitens did “the right thing” in stepping down.
Meanwhile, Parson, the man who will take Greitens’ place in the Governor’s office, has not issued any statements as of this writing. His chief of staff, Ward Franz, said that a statement would be “forthcoming.”
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