Friday, June 8, 2018

Special Prosecutor Won't Refile Invasion of Privacy Case vs. Greitens

Posted By on Fri, Jun 8, 2018 at 2:39 PM

Jean Peters Baker. - COURTESY OF JACKSON COUNTY PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE
  • COURTESY OF JACKSON COUNTY PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE
  • Jean Peters Baker.

Jean Peters Baker, the special prosecutor tasked with handling the invasion of privacy case against former Governor Eric Greitens, will not refile the charge against him.

Baker, who is also the Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney, announced the resolution of the case today, one week after Greitens stepped down as governor.

Greitens was initially charged by the St. Louis Circuit Attorney in the felony case, accused of taking a semi-naked photo of his hairdresser without her consent to threaten her silence. While there has never been any evidence or testimony that Greitens showed a photo to anyone, the Circuit Attorney rested its theory on the case that, if it was taken on a smartphone, it could have been transmitted to the cloud — and its taking was therefore automatically a felony.



Baker apparently saw it differently. She said her office had "exhausted potential leads," but that there wasn't enough evidence to bring the case, particularly in light of the fact that a photo has never been recovered.

In a statement by her attorney, Scott Simpson, the woman at the center of the case said she was grateful to the special prosecutor, the Missouri Highway Patrol, and "all who have supported her and believed her testimony." He wrote, "That support lifted her spirits and helped her through this challenging time."

The statement continued,
No woman should have to endure the trauma that comes from her ex-husband selling her private story for a six-figure payout. No woman should have to turn on the television and watch as the most private and difficult moments of her life are broadcast despite pleading with the reporter for privacy. No woman should be forced to answer countless hours of highly personal questions that are in no way relevant to the issue of whether a nude photograph was taken without her consent. The most intimate details of her life were made public by a vengeful ex-husband and a second man willing to spend millions of dollars spreading lies about her in an effort to save his political career. My client did not ask for any of this treatment nor was she paid or otherwise compensated. No legal funds were created and no pleas for donations were made by her or on her behalf.

As my client, and the citizens of this state, move past this difficult time in Missouri's history, we hope other women in similar situations are not discouraged by this process. It takes real courage to testify once, let alone six times, but that courage exposes the truth.
As part of a deal to resign, Greitens saw a second felony charge, one alleging computer tampering, dismissed last week. For the first time since February 23, the man who was once a rising political star has no immediate possibility of criminal charges hanging overhead.

He also no longer has a job.

We welcome tips and feedback. Email the author at sarah.fenske@riverfronttimes.com

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