Woman In Missouri Gov Blackmail Scandal Asks For Privacy

AP

The unnamed woman who was allegedly targeted for blackmail by Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens (R) to keep her from going public about their affair spoke out through her lawyer for the first time Friday, urging the press to respect her privacy.

The lawyer, Scott Simpson of Knight & Simpson, said in a statement that the woman is “extremely distraught” that the allegations have been made public. Simpson also said the woman believes her ex-husband “betrayed her confidence” by speaking with the media.

“This story has taken an emotional toll on our client and she is extremely distraught that the information has been made public,” the statement, which was obtained by TPM, reads. “It is very disappointing that her ex-husband betrayed her confidence by secretly, and without her knowledge, recording a private and deeply personal conversation and then subsequently released the recording to the media without her consent.”

The story broke late Wednesday after the ex-husband provided local station KMOV with a recording he made of a conversation in which the woman describes Greitens tying her up to exercise equipment in his basement and taking a nude photograph of her without her consent. The woman told her husband that Greitens threatened to release the photo if she revealed the affair.

On Thursday, TPM reported that the woman later told her husband that Greitens had slapped her after she told him she’d had sex with her husband.

Greitens has confirmed that he engaged in an affair but strenuously denied any reports that he attempted to blackmail or slap the woman. The St. Louis Circuit Attorney is investigating the allegations.

The statement from Simpson added that the woman has “consistently and continuously asked the reporters to not publish the story.”

“Our client is a single mother working hard to raise a family,” the statement continues. “She is saddened that during this time of national introspection on the treatment of women in our society, allegations about her private life have been published without her permission.”

The statement does not deny any of the specific allegations that the ex-husband and his attorney, Al Watkins, have made.

Read the full statement below:

Our law firm represents the unnamed woman in the recent story involving Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens. We are reaching out to you today to ask the media and the public to respect our client’s request for privacy. This story has taken an emotional toll on our client and she is extremely distraught that the information has been made public. It is very disappointing that her ex husband betrayed her confidence by secretly, and without her knowledge, recording a private and deeply personal conversation and then subsequently released the recording to the media without her consent.

Prior to releasing the story, a number of reporters made contact with our client asking her to comment on the information provided by her ex-husband. In response, she has consistently and continuously asked the reporters to not publish the story. Any comments that were made “on the record” or “off the record” have consistently been requests for privacy. Our client is a single mother working hard to raise a family. She is saddened that during this time of national introspection on the treatment of women in our society, allegations about her private life have been published without her permission.

At this time, our client would like to thank each reporter and media outlet who honored her request for privacy prior to the story’s release. She wants to remain a private citizen and does not want to be a part of this story. We are asking the media and the public to continue respecting her privacy.

Editor’s note: This story initially said the photograph incident occurred in the woman’s home; it actually occurred in Greitens’ home, as TPM has previously reported.

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