ST. LOUIS • An attorney for the man whose secretly recorded conversation with his wife exposed Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens’ extramarital affair last week says his client made additional recordings as well, and that he has forwarded them to both the St. Louis circuit attorney’s office and the FBI.
The attorney, Albert Watkins, didn’t specify that the FBI requested the previously undisclosed recordings, but he said there was an “expression of interest” by the federal agency about them.
Watkins declined to comment on how many additional recordings between the then-spouses exist, or whether the additional recordings involved any discussion of Greitens.
Greitens last week acknowledged he’d had an affair with the woman, his hair stylist, in 2015, as he was starting his run for governor. Greitens has forcefully denied a related allegation that the woman made to her husband: that Greitens took a nonconsensual photo of her while she was bound, blindfolded and partly undressed during a sexual encounter and that he threatened to publicize the photo if she exposed their affair.
The taking of nonconsensual photos of a person in a state of full or partial nudity is a Class A misdemeanor in Missouri, punishable by up to a year imprisonment. Some legal experts say Greitens’ alleged threat regarding the photo also could constitute blackmail or extortion.
St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner has said her office will investigate the allegations. A spokeswoman for Gardner, Susan Ryan, said she could not confirm that the office had received the recordings discussed by Watkins. The FBI has declined to confirm or deny whether it is investigating.
Greitens’ affair came to light last week, when the man released to the media an audio recording he made of a conversation with his then-wife in which she confessed to a sexual encounter with Greitens and made the allegation about the photo. The woman wasn’t aware that the conversation was being recorded, though Watkins said the man told her about the recording later on the same day.
Watkins’ comment Tuesday marks the first public mention of additional audio recordings. Watkins said his client made them at the advice of a counselor to address problems the man was having processing information during conversations.
“This is something that was done before the initial confession” that was publicized last week, “and subsequent to it,” Watkins said. “There was nothing nefarious about it.”
He said in each case, the woman was made aware of the recordings either as they were being made or shortly after.
Missouri is a “one-party consent” state, meaning any person who is involved in a conversation has the legal right to record it, even if another party in the conversation isn’t aware it’s being recorded.
The man and his wife divorced subsequent to her affair with Greitens. The Post-Dispatch has chosen not to publish either of their names because the woman hasn’t consented to an interview.