Scandal: Police investigating claim Eliot Spitzer choked woman in Plaza Hotel

Mystery woman flies to Russia the day after incident and sends email claiming 'my report was all fake'

Eliot Spitzer, who resigned as governor of New York in 2008 amid reports that he was a client of a high-priced prostitution ring, is now at the center of a new criminal investigation, according to officials, after a 26-year-old woman said he choked her when they were alone in a room at the Plaza Hotel.

But on Monday, Spitzer’s lawyer said that the woman had apologized by email for making up the allegation.

Spitzer's lawyer: 'No assault'

“There is no case here,” said the lawyer, Adam S. Kaufmann, who added that he had given the Manhattan district attorney’s office a copy of the email and who also provided a copy to The New York Times. “There was no assault.”

The investigation is being conducted by detectives from the New York Police Department, along with the district attorney’s office, which declined to comment about the email. The police have said the investigation is continuing.

Woman called 911; Spitzer in the room

On Saturday night, the woman, whose name was not released by the authorities, made a call to 911, saying she had cut her wrists, said a law enforcement official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the continuing inquiry. When detectives arrived at the Plaza, Spitzer, a combative onetime prosecutor who once delighted in calling himself a “steamroller,” was in her room, trying to calm her, Kaufmann said.

The police took her to Mount Sinai West, formerly St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center. Another law enforcement official said she told hospital employees that Spitzer had choked her. The Police Department released an official statement confirming the investigation.

Woman flies to Russia

Kaufmann gave a different version of events. He said Spitzer had heard from the woman last week.

“This is someone that he had a relationship with in the past,” Kaufmann said, though he declined to say how long Spitzer had known her.

She left the hospital on Sunday and flew to Russia as scheduled, Kaufmann said. And on Monday, she sent the email. “I just read the news, I’m so sorry,” she said, offering to send a statement to the police “that my report was all fake.”