Missouri Prosecutors Condition Dropping Of Charges Against Greitens On His Promising Not To Sue Them

Eric_Greitens_2011-7The resignation of Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is little surprise given the myriad of criminal charges brought against him for sexual misconduct and campaign violations. This resignation comes after St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner dismissed a felony charge accusing Greitens for allegedly tampering with computer data involving the donor list of a veterans’ charity he founded. What stood out in the agreement with Gardner was a condition that I have always found problematic and should be barred under state law: a promise not to sue Gardner or her office.  Greitens offered to resign as a condition for the settlement.

Greitens indicated that his legal fees were over $2 million and that he could not afford to go to trial on the charges.  Gardner insisted that she remained “confident we have the evidence required to pursue charges against Mr. Greitens, but sometimes pursuing charges is not the right thing to do for our city or our state.”

The final seven stipulations in the agreement include two sealed stipulations.  I also have concerns over conditions being removed from the public scrutiny in a case involving their governor.

However, I am most concerned about the condition that Greitens release Gardner and her office from civil liability.  In my view, these conditions should be viewed as improper from a public policy standpoint.  In negotiating an agreement with an alleged felon, Gardner should not be adding conditions to benefit herself or her office.  Likewise, it should be treated as improper to force a defendant to negotiate protections for the prosecutors as a condition for his having charges dropped.

As part of the agreement, including the protection for Gardner herself, Greitens was not expected to plead guilty to a single count.

Greitens could still face the refiling of charged dropped last month of his alleged invasion-of-privacy in February in St. Louis. The Missouri House of Representatives also investigated the allegations involving a former hair stylist of Greitens who had an affair with him before he became governor.  She accused him of assault, including spanking her and forcing oral sex as well as blackmail involving revealing pictures.

As Missouri looks at this scandal for possible reforms, it would be wise to consider a ban on prosecutors negotiating for their own immunity or protection from lawsuit. If there are grounds for such lawsuits, it is in the public’s interest to have those allegations adjudicated.

 

7 thoughts on “Missouri Prosecutors Condition Dropping Of Charges Against Greitens On His Promising Not To Sue Them”

  1. Greitens indicated that his legal fees were over $2 million and that he could not afford to go to trial on the charges.

    He should have hired cheaper lawyers.

  2. This is a very bizarre outcome. If the prosecutor has a good case, there’s no reason not to pursue it. However, the mere existence of a stipulation not to sue the prosecutor’s office indicates demonstrable misconduct. This case needs far greater investigation on both sides in order to figure what’s really going on.

  3. If you don’t believe this was a witch hunt then you don’t understand the government and politics. Don’t forget a spiteful husband who blackmailed his then wife and the jury is still out about what he gained. Anybody who dates him should take his phone and wand him for other devices. She, of course is the participating ‘victim’ who helped start this firestorm.

    There is a website called Prosecutorial Integrity which was started a few years ago by some folks who saw the inherent unfairness compounded by a nation hell-bent on maintaining the title of ‘incarceration nation as we have 5% of the world’s population AND 25% of the world’s incarcerated. Next question is how much does it cost you to incarcerate each person for just one year.

    Women Against Registry fights against the destruction of the 2.5 million family members of the 874,000 (NCMEC) men, women and children registered citizens in America.

  4. Strange case. On the one hand, the prosecutor appears to have erred in both criminal charges, especially the allegation that Greitans took an unwelcome nude image of his married mistress (her husband since divorced her) and threatened to release the image if the woman disclosed the relationship. The prosecutor not only charged Greitans sans image, a travesty, since that time the ex-mistress also disclosed “I may have only dreamt the image incident.” Sweet, not.

    Then the DA also charges Greitans with “stealing” a donor list from a non-profit that Greitans started. Really? Does that not seem a stretch? Why the hard on for Greitans? Need more info.

    So the prosecutor erred, at least once, likely twice. Lacking such error, Greitans would be $2M richer. But the fact of the error(s) also apparently keeps him out of prison (though unemployed and potentially lifetime unemployable).

    Sucks to be Greitans now. Feel really sorry for his wife and kids. Sad. At least his wife has her University job. They’re gonna need it.

    I respectfully request Turley post about the SF 49ers Reuben Foster DV case in San Mateo. RF’s then-girlfriend gets in a road rage cat fight, with video. Next night RF tells her the relationship is over, after which she immediately invents a DV charge, telling the police RF caused the injuries resulting from the cat fight. RF was arrested that night. 2 days later the ex-girlfriend admits the truth to the DA, with video proof of the cat fight. Still, weeks later the DA confirms felony DV charges. At the preliminary hearing the ex admits all her lies, and that she did this before to an earlier boy friend, for which crime she did jail time. Judge tosses the DV charges saying there was “no proof” of any DV, after which at least twice the DA still insists publicly that RF committed DV.

    1. I feel sorry for Greitens too, but that is tempered by the knowledge that he did it to himself.

  5. Another disgusting example of how the elites protect their own re: “Gardner insisted that she remained “confident we have the evidence required to pursue charges against Mr. Greitens, but sometimes pursuing charges is not the right thing to do for our city or our state.”

    We, the people are NOT in the club.

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