Missouri Governor Eric Greitens, a rising star in the Republican Party who faced the possibility of impeachment in connection with a sex scandal, abruptly announced his resignation on Tuesday.
Greitens, a former Navy SEAL, said he had decided to resign, telling reporters that the last few months have been “incredibly difficult” for his family and team. “The time has come to tend to those who have been wounded,” he said.
Greitens has been accused of taking a nude photo of a woman with whom he had an affair in 2015. He has also been accused of misusing the donor list of a charity he founded to raise money for his political campaign.
Greitens, who took office in January 2017, denied the allegations, although he admitted to having an affair with his former hairdresser. The Missouri Legislature began a special session earlier this month to consider impeaching the governor.
“It’s clear for the forces that oppose us, there is no end in sight. I cannot allow those forces to continue to cause pain and difficulty to the people that I love,” Greitens said. “I know, and people of good faith know, that I am not perfect, but I have not broken any laws, nor committed any offense worthy of this treatment.”
Greitens added: “I will let the fairness of this process be judged by history.”
A short time later, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner announced that a deal had been reached with the governor’s defense team. “We have reached a fair and just resolution of the pending charges,” she said, adding that details will be released on Wednesday.
Greitens is facing a felony charge of computer tampering in connection with the donor list. He was also charged in April with felony invasion of privacy, but the charge was later dropped to let a special prosecutor examine the case.