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Former New York governor Elliot Spitzer accused of choking former high priced escort

February 16, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Former New York governor Elliot Spitzer accused of choking former high priced escort

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NEW YORK (AP) — Police are investigating a woman’s report that she was assaulted by former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in a room at The Plaza Hotel, an allegation his attorney said Monday was false, created by someone with “emotional difficulties.”

The woman, identified as 25-year-old Svetlana Zakharova Travis, a divorced beauty who once wrote an article dubbed sex is sex, but money is money, which she bared details of her life as a $5,000-a-night escort, the New York Post reported.

Although the woman was divorced, she kept the last name of her ex-husband.

Attorney Adam Kaufmann said the allegations concerned Travis, who Spitzer has known “for a period of time.” He said she phoned him from California where she had been living to say she was returning to her native Russia via New York. The two agreed to meet at The Plaza Hotel mid-afternoon Saturday.

“And they had a brief and amicable conversation, Mr. Spitzer left,” Kaufmann said in a statement. But she called a few hours later and asked that he return to the room, where she had become “highly emotional and was threatening self-harm,” he said.

Travis called 911 from the hotel room rented by Spitzer Saturday evening, saying she had cut herself, was distraught and having a breakdown, according to two law enforcement officials with knowledge of the case. They were not authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Travis called back and tried to cancel the emergency call but police were already en route, they said.

Kaufmann verified that Travis made the calls, but said “She was distraught and Mr. Spitzer sought to keep her calm.”

When Police arrived, Travis said she was fine. However, officers noticed a cut on her arm, broken glass and decided to take her to a hospital.

Officials said Travis told doctors at the hospital of her relationship with the 56-year-old Spitzer, and that the former governor had choked her, then shoved her after an heated argument.

Travis explained that the two had been together at a bar at the hotel earlier Saturday evening, the officials said.

In reference to the assault claim, Spitzer’s spokeswoman Lisa Linden said: “There is no truth to the allegation.” Later Monday, Spitzer released a statement saying: “The woman who initially made the allegation was not my girlfriend.” He did not elaborate on the relationship with Travis.

Hospital staff contacted police, who spoke to the woman and she told them she was leaving shortly for Moscow and did not want to press charges. She said they had argued over her leaving for Russia and he assaulted her, he then she broke a glass and cut her arm, the officials said.

Police said Travis, who had her arm bandaged, and was released from the hospital, refused to cooperate with law enforcement. She left on a flight to Russia on Sunday evening.

“Unsolicited, she has indicated that any allegations of assault were false,” Kaufmann said, adding it was unfortunate that the woman’s “emotional difficulties” had been made public. “Mr. Spitzer acted appropriately at all times during this incident. He has been and intends to remain fully cooperative in the event there is any further inquiry by relevant authorities.”

The police department confirmed that detectives were “investigating allegations of an assault which occurred at a midtown hotel.”

“The victim has indicated that the subject is Elliot Spitzer (sic). Through an ongoing investigation, we are attempting to further establish the identity of the subject and the nature of the incident,” the statement said. No other details were given.

Detectives have yet to question Spitzer. Spitzer noted in his statement that Lis Smith, a 33-year-old public relations executive, was his girlfriend. “And I had and have deep affection for Lis.” The couple broke up in December after about two years of dating.

Spitzer, a Democrat, resigned two years into his term in 2008 amid revelations that he had sex with prostitutes.

He was identified as a patron of a high-priced prostitution ring during a federal investigation, but he was never charged. His attempt at a political comeback failed when he lost his bid to become New York City’s comptroller in 2013.

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