Greitens gets custody of children for summer, GOP Senate candidate's campaign says

A spokesperson for Eric Greitens's Senate campaign said Thursday that the ex-Missouri governor has been granted custody of his children for the summer amid a legal dispute with his estranged wife.

The disgraced former governor, who is now seeking the Republican nomination for a Missouri Senate seat, and his estranged wife, Sheena Greitens, remain in a custody dispute amid their separation. That followed a scandal involving allegations of sexual misconduct and campaign finance violations that led to his resignation as governor.

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Sheena Greitens's attorney, Helen Wade, said in court Thursday that Greitens received death threats after Eric Greitens's campaign released a controversial ad depicting the candidate going "RINO hunting" for his political opponents. The ad depicts Greitens with a gun and a tactical team to hunt so-called "Republicans In Name Only."

In a March affidavit, Sheena Greitens accused her ex-husband of both physical and emotional abuse toward her as well as their two children. Eric Greitens denied those claims and accused her of conspiring with Republicans in Washington to work against his Senate campaign.

Wade in court called for the campaign to make a public statement denouncing the threats. Gary Stamper, an attorney for Greitens, said in a statement that documents of the threats included "consisted of a vulgar email to her client from a pro-choice activist referencing coat hangers, and one tweet threatening Eric and his family."

"We saw no evidence of any death threats," Stamper said. "Opposing counsel asked us to denounce the email and post. We do."

Stamper said in a statement that Greitens will have custody of his children for most of the summer "while his ex-wife will be with the boys for 3 weekends and weekly 3-hour visits."

"The parties have also agreed to follow the current parenting plan through May 2023, which directs that the boys spend the majority of their free time with Eric, including all Thanksgiving, Spring Break, most of Winter Break, and every major holiday," he said.

A request from Sheena Greitens to have the custody case moved to Texas, where she has since moved and citing Eric Greitens's political influence in Missouri, remains under consideration by the court.

Mulitple Missouri Republican Senate candidates are running to succeed retiring Sen. Roy Blunt, with the primary scheduled for Aug. 2. Greitens has led recent polls of the contest, but prominent state Republicans, including Blunt and Sen. Josh Hawley, have endorsed his rivals. Some state and national Republicans have expressed concern that nominating the scandal-plagued Greitens in the primary could cost the party an otherwise easy victory in a deep-red state in November.

Former President Donald Trump has yet to make an endorsement in the race, and recent reports have indicated he is wavering as to which candidate he will support.

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In March, Trump issued a statement asking if "the great people of Missouri been considering the big, loud and proud personality of Congressman Billy Long for the Senate?"

"This is not an endorsement, but I'm just askin'?" the statement read.

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