Greitens update

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JEFFERSON CITY - In another day of political theater, the special House committee investigating Governor Eric Greitens heard new testimony from a forensic examiner Friday. Committee members questioned forensic investigator Brian Koberna about the three phones he studied belonging to Greitens, the woman he had a relationship with and her ex-husband.

Koberna called the three images he recovered “benign in nature.” He said there was nothing that could prove they were taken on March 21, 2015, the day Greitens allegedly bound and photographed the woman who is accusing him of sexual misconduct.

Koberna assured the committee that he had no relation to Greitens, his defense counsel or any major players involved with the allegations made against the governor.

“It is refreshing to see someone sitting in that chair that doesn’t have some possible ulterior motive, sitting next to a lawyer who's trying to obstruct us from finding the truth,” Rep. J. Eggleston (R-Maysville) said, in reference to Albert Watkins and Chuck Hatfield, attorneys representing parties in the case.

Eggleston and Rep. Jay Barnes, (R-Jefferson City) provided Koberna with four phone numbers to verify if they matched the numbers associated with the phones he analyzed. Three of them did not match the phones examined and one of them matched the number Koberna associated with Greitens, though not the phone he examined. Koberna said it was possible a phone could use more than one number. 

Koberna said there was no evidence of apps on the phones that could delete any trails to pictures. He did say that there was evidence of Confide, an instant messaging system designed to delete messages as soon as they’re read, and prevents users from taking screenshots.

When questioned about the possibility of the governor hiding data on his phone, Koberna said he could not guarantee that did or did not happen.

“Anything’s doable. I would be hesitant to say somebody can’t accomplish manipulating data or something like that,” he said.

Halfway through the testimony, Rep. Curtis Trent (R-Springfield) produced a new document and requested to hand it out to the committee. Some committee members objected to introducing the document, saying they would not allow “cherry-picked evidence” 88 days into the investigation.

Attorney Michelle Nassar was present to represent the governor. She requested a private meeting with the committee chair when the document was introduced.

“I’m not here to answer questions,” Nassar said.

After a lengthy and tense back and forth between Nassar and Barnes, the committee subpoenaed the governor to testify before the committee on June 4 and Witness 1, the woman he had an affair with, on June 5.

Koberna will return to testify Tuesday at 10 a.m.