Ex-wife of Missouri GOP Senate candidate Eric Greitens alleges he physically abused her and their children

todayMarch 22, 2022

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Sheena Greitens, who now resides in Texas with the previous couple’s two kids, mentioned she grew so afraid of her former husband that she sought to restrict his entry to weapons and commenced sleeping in her kids’s room out of concern for his or her security, based on an affidavit filed within the Circuit Court docket of Boone County in Missouri, as a part of her effort to have a custody case moved to Texas.

“In early June 2018, I turned afraid for my security and that of our youngsters at our house, which was pretty remoted, attributable to Eric’s unstable and coercive conduct,” she mentioned, based on courtroom data from the continued custody battle. “This conduct included bodily violence towards our youngsters, reminiscent of cuffing our then three-year-old son throughout the face on the dinner desk in entrance of me and yanking him round by his hair.”

Sheena Greitens mentioned she and others had been so involved about Eric Greitens’ conduct that they restricted his entry to firearms on three events. She mentioned she was involved in regards to the “escalation of bodily violence” and ultimately, “I began sleeping in my kids’s room merely to attempt to preserve them protected,” based on her affidavit.

In a press release, Eric Greitens denied the allegations.

“Being a father is the enjoyment of my life and my single most necessary duty,” he mentioned. “I’ll proceed to like and look after my lovely sons with all of my being, and that features combating for the reality and towards utterly fabricated, baseless allegations.”

On Monday, his lawyer requested the choose to seal the custody case.

In her affidavit, Sheena Greitens laid out a sequence of allegations of verbal threats and bodily abuse towards each her and their kids. She detailed how Eric Greitens allegedly threatened to make use of his political ties to tarnish his ex-wife’s status.

In a single occasion, she claimed Eric Greitens had “knocked me down and confiscated my cellular phone, pockets, and keys in order that I used to be unable to name for assist or extricate myself and our youngsters,” based on the courtroom submitting.

In one other 2019 incident, one of many kids returned from a go to with Eric Greitens with a swollen face, bleeding gums and a unfastened tooth, based on her courtroom submitting. “He mentioned Dad had hit him; nevertheless, Eric mentioned they had been roughhousing and it had been an accident,” Sheena Greitens mentioned in her affidavit.

At one level, Sheena Greitens mentioned she tried to flee with the kids.

“Once I informed Eric about my plans, he threatened to return to the airport and have me arrested for kidnapping and baby abuse, saying that due to his authority as a former Governor who had supported regulation enforcement, the police would assist him and never consider me, and I’d lose our youngsters,” based on the affidavit.

Sheena and Eric Greitens divorced in 2020. Sheena Greitens’ lawyer didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Greitens’ marketing campaign supervisor Dylan Johnson mentioned: “His ex-wife is engaged in a last-ditch try to vindictively destroy her ex-husband. Although she is aware of that the press will viciously repeat her false allegations, Eric has at all times been an excellent Dad, who loves his boys and has at all times put them first, and that’s the reason he’s submitting for full custody of his kids.”

Eric Greitens has been vying for the GOP nomination to succeed retiring Sen. Roy Blunt. The crowded major additionally contains US Rep. Vicky Hartzler, State Legal professional Common Eric Schmitt, US Rep. Billy Lengthy and others.

Within the wake of the most recent allegations, Hartzler, Schmitt and Lengthy referred to as on Greitens to drop out of the race.

“I’ve one factor that I wish to say: actual males by no means abuse girls and kids. Interval. Finish of story,” Hartzler mentioned. “It is time for Eric to get out of the Senate race and to get skilled assist.”

Schmitt referred to as the abuse allegations “sickening,” including, “The conduct described on this affidavit is trigger for Eric Greitens to be in jail, not on the poll for U.S. Senate. He ought to finish his marketing campaign instantly.”

Lengthy mentioned he was “shocked and appalled” by what was within the affidavit, including of Greitens: “He’s clearly unfit to signify the state of Missouri in the USA Senate. There isn’t any means he can keep on this race.”

Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, the No. 2 Senate Republican, on Monday turned the highest-ranking Republican to say Greitens ought to go away the race.

Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley, who referred to as on Greitens to resign as governor in 2018 and has endorsed Hartzler within the Senate major, additionally referred to as for him to drop out, expressing concern that Republicans may lose the seat if Greitens had been the nominee.

Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell had no touch upon Greitens on Monday. Strolling in silence with out saying something, the Kentucky Republican wouldn’t reply to questions on whether or not the Senate candidate ought to drop out.

Greitens’ gorgeous fall from grace in 2018 got here as he confronted requires impeachment from the GOP-controlled state legislature and a prison cost — invasion of privateness — associated to a 2015 affair, through which his former hairdresser alleged he tied her up, coerced her into oral intercourse and threatened to blackmail her with partially nude images to cowl up their affair.

Greitens admitted to the affair however refuted the blackmail declare. He was individually charged with one other felony — tampering with laptop knowledge — for allegedly misusing a veterans charity’s donor record for his 2016 gubernatorial marketing campaign.

The prison fees towards Greitens had been dropped. And a former FBI agent investigating the blackmail allegations was later indicted for perjury and tampering with bodily proof. When a Missouri ethics panel investigated Greitens’ marketing campaign misconduct, it discovered no proof of wrongdoing however fined the marketing campaign for failing to report in-kind contributions.

Greitens’ accuser by no means recanted her sexual misconduct allegations.

Sheena Greitens mentioned in her affidavit filed Monday that Eric Greitens admitted to her that he took the picture that resulted within the invasion of privateness cost, however “he threatened that I’d be uncovered to authorized jeopardy if I ever disclosed that truth to anybody.”

She additionally alleged that within the spring and summer season of 2018, “Eric repeatedly threatened to kill himself except I supplied particular public assist to him.”

Earlier this yr, the previous governor informed CNN that he did “completely” nothing incorrect together with his former hairdresser and claimed that he resigned for his two kids.

“It was the factor that I needed to do for the individuals who I like probably the most, significantly for my boys, given these super lies and the super stress that was on my children,” he mentioned.

However Sheena Greitens pushed again on that rationalization in her courtroom submitting, saying their younger kids had been “unaware of the scandal, and I would love them to stay so till they’re older.”

She added: “I’ve privately advised Eric to cease introducing false and deceptive details about our marriage and divorce into the general public in his quest for political workplace,” based on her courtroom submitting.

Earlier than the scandals, Greitens, a former Navy SEAL, was a rising star within the Republican Occasion. Within the Senate race, he has utterly aligned himself with former President Donald Trump. He has unfold the lie that Trump gained the 2020 presidential election, mentioned he wouldn’t assist Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell for Senate GOP chief and lately visited Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s Florida resort, the place he met with Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, who advises his Senate marketing campaign.

This story has been up to date with further response.

Hannah Norton and CNN’s Manu Raju, Alex Rogers, Ali Zaslav and Michael Warren contributed to this report.

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