As news broke Thursday that Eric Greitens had been indicted on a felony charge of invasion of privacy, the Missouri governor became a trending news topic online.
Amid the furor, Greitens dismissed the accusations against him in a statement.
He is accused of taking a nude photo of the woman with whom he had an affair against her will. He also allegedly transferred the image “in a manner that allowed access to that image via a computer,” according to St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, who launched an investigation after the ex-husband of Greitens’ mistress released a secret recording of the woman speaking about the affair.
In the video, the woman says Greitens threatened to blackmail her into silence. Greitens has repeatedly denied the allegations and has said the affair was consensual.
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Thousands chimed in on social media with their takes on the indictment.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Greitens was the first sitting governor of Missouri ever to be indicted, citing Ken Winn, a former Missouri state archivist.
Not long ago, some speculated that Greitens would one day run for president. But now, his “career is crumbling amid scandal,” The Washington Post concluded.
In a statement, Greitens dismissed the indictment as a partisan attack by a “reckless liberal prosecutor” and vowed it would “not for a moment deter me from doing the important work of the great people of Missouri.”
Hours before the indictment was announced, the Republican Governors Association called Greitens a “leader” in a tweet. Many joked about the timing of the tweet.
Many called for Greitens’ resignation, including some lawmakers in Missouri. Sen. Rob Schaaf, a St. Joseph Republican, tweeted just two words Thursday afternoon:
Talia Bracha Lavin, a fact-checker for the New Yorker, tweeted sarcastically about Greitens.
The tweet was a reference to an ad released by the former Navy SEAL during his campaign for governor in which a narrator says, “When he fights back, he brings out the big guns,” as Greitens calmly fires a machine gun into a lake.
Here are more reactions to the indictment — many of them scathing.