UPDATE: Special prosecutor says time ran out on re-charging Greitens
KANSAS CITY - The special prosecutor who decided not to re-file an invasion of privacy charge against former Governor Eric Greitens said Friday "the clock was ticking loudly" with the statute of limitations expiring in a matter of hours.
Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said she and her team “have been running hard,” filing subpoenas, gathering statements from new witnesses and conducting a forensic examination of "one of" Greitens phones.
Baker repeatedly expressed her frustration and anger over how Greitens' defense team treated the woman who accused him of taking a partially nude photo of her and threatening to use it against her.
Baker said during a deposition, Greitens' lawyers repeated asked the woman, "are you a liar." The prosecutor said they also asked questions like "who did your boobs" and "who did your belly ring." At one point, Baker said, they even asked the woman if photos from a fetish website were her.
Baker read a statement from the woman's attorney saying, "No woman should be made to spend countless hours facing questions about her life."
Baker got the case after St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner dropped the original charge. Greitens repeatedly accused Gardner's chief investigator of misconduct and his lawyers got permission from the judge to take the unusually step of calling Gardner as a witness.
On more than one occasion, Greitens accused Gardner of a witch hunt.
Baker said she and her team "exhausted every lead we could find" in the short time they had to find evidence to corroborate the testimony of the woman involved, which Baker called "clear" and "consistent."
The woman made it clear she didn't want to "go it alone" without that evidence, Baker said.
In the statement read by Baker, the woman's attorney said she was "grateful to all who have supported her and who believes her testimony."
Baker talked about the way the case became public when the woman's ex-husband released a recording of the woman, in tears, saying Greitens blindfolded her, bound her with duct tape, took the picture and threatened her.
She "never wanted this" but "did tell the truth" in hours and hours of tough questioning, Baker said.
Baker took a moment to address other victims of sexual assault saying "we want to hear from you, we need to hear from you."
Greitens is now free of all criminal charges in the two scandals that led up to his resignation.
Greitens resigned effective June 1 as part of a deal with the St. Louis Circuit Attorney. Gardner agreed to drop a felony computer tampering charge in exchange for Greitens stepping down.