Mo. governor or aides accused of destroying e-mail records

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Independent investigators on Monday alleged that Gov. Matt Blunt or his top aides ordered state computer technicians to destroy copies of e-mail messages that might have been politically damaging.

The accusations came in a 26-page lawsuit filed in Cole County Circuit Court by Mel Fisher, the former head of the Missouri Highway Patrol, who is leading the investigation into the Blunt administration’s handling of public records.

A spokeswoman for the governor’s office called the lawsuit politically motivated and said the administration would not address matters now subject to litigation.

The lawsuit says the Blunt administration tried to arrange the destruction of backup computer tapes that routinely copy every e-mail on the governor’s office computers several times a day. The goal, the lawsuit says, was to block the release of e-mails to reporters, who were investigating political activities by Blunt’s staff while on the state payroll.

Read the full story at