Republican Missouri governor accused of blackmail during extramarital affair
- Gov. Eric Greitens of Missouri has been accused of taking a compromising photo of a woman with whom he had an extramarital affair.
- Greitens admitted to having an affair, which reportedly took place before was elected, but he denied allegations that he intended to use the photo to blackmail the alleged victim.
Gov. Eric Greitens of Missouri has been accused of taking a compromising photo of a woman with whom he allegedly had an extramarital affair, an investigation by the television station KMOV revealed. Greitens' lawyer has denied allegations that Greitens intended to use the photo as blackmail
In a recording between the woman who claimed to have had the affair and her husband at the time, the woman, whose identity was not disclosed, claimed to have met Greitens when he was a customer at a hair salon where she worked.
The ex-husband who provided the recording to KMOV alleged that Greitens had escalated the encounter by taking a nude picture of his wife "as blackmail."
"There is no worse person," the ex-husband alleged. "I think it's as bad as it gets, It's as bad as it gets when someone takes advantage of something."
The woman continued to say in the recording that the sexual encounter was consensual and that Greitens apologized and deleted the photo after the encounter.
Greitens, who admitted to the affair on Wednesday, said in a joint statement with his wife that the affair took place years before he was elected governor and that it was a "deeply personal mistake."
"Eric took responsibility, and we dealt with this together honestly and privately," the statement read, according to KMOV. "While we never would have wished for this pain in our marriage, or the pain that this has caused others, with God's mercy Sheena has forgiven and we have emerged stronger."
"We understand that there will be some people who cannot forgive - but for those who can find it in your heart, Eric asks for your forgiveness," the statement continued, "And we are grateful for your love, your compassion, and your prayers."
James Bennet, Greitens's attorney, issued a statement saying there were "multiple false allegations" in an original report that aired on local television, and claimed that "there was no blackmail."
"The outrageous claims of improper conduct regarding these almost three-year-ago events are false," Bennet said.
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