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Missouri lawyer dealt blow in case over Greiten's use of message-deleting app

Missouri lawyer dealt blow in case over Greiten's use of message-deleting app

July 9th, 2019 by Associated Press in Missouri News

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens reads from a prepared statement as he announces his resignation during a news conference, Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City, Mo. Greitens resigned amid a widening investigation that arose from an affair with his former hairdresser. Greitens said his resignation would take effect Friday, June 1, 2018.

Photo by Julie Smith /News Tribune.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri judge has dismissed claims that former Gov. Eric Greitens' office used a message-deleting app to avoid the state Sunshine Law.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Cole County Circuit Judge Jon Beetem on Monday sided with the former governor's office.

St. Louis attorney Ben Sansone sued Greitens in 2017 over use of the Confide app. Greitens resigned last year in the face of possible impeachment and allegations of sexual and political misconduct, but the lawsuit continued.

The judge ruled that Confide doesn't create government records that can be retained. Beetem also ruled that as a private citizen, Sansone cannot sue Greitens over alleged Sunshine Law violations.

Beetem set a July 23 hearing over Sansone's remaining claim that Greitens' administration failed to turn over certain phone records.