The woman with whom former presidential candidate John Edwards has publicly admitted to having an affair was married for a decade to the son of Boulder’s former district attorney, Alex Hunter.
Edwards, a former North Carolina senator and 2004 Democratic vice-presidential nominee, admitted Friday to ABC News that he had lied repeatedly about the affair with Rielle Hunter, now 44.
Edwards denied, however, fathering the woman’s daughter, Frances Quinn Hunter, who was born Feb. 27.
Before the scandal erupted, the woman â who changed her name from Lisa Druck â was married for 10 years to Alexander “Kip” Munro Hunter III, of Boulder.
Hunter III is an attorney and son of the man who was arguably Boulder’s most famous prosecutor. The senior Hunter gained international attention while leading the JonBenet Ramsey homicide investigation following the 1996 slaying.
His son married Druck in 1991, and the couple moved to a $700,000 bungalow in Beverly Hills.
The Los Angeles County Assessor’s Office on Tuesday confirmed Hunter III owned the property from at least 1994 to 1999.
It was there, in the heart of the movie industry, that Druck started using the stage name Rielle Hunter, and in 1994 she legally adopted that name, which is pronounced “Riley.”
According to the divorce records, she received $5,000 a month for all of 2000 and $4,000 a month for the next year. Then the spousal support ended.
On Tuesday, Hunter III was in Boulder at his 1,300-square-foot, $540,000 condo atop a commercial building in the 800 block of Pearl Street, which Boulder County assessor’s records show he purchased in 2001.
“I hope you can appreciate why I can’t comment,” Hunter III said by phone, declining to talk about his ex-wife.
The senior Hunter did not return phone calls Tuesday.
Unlike his father, Hunter III has kept a relatively low-profile public life.
According to Camera archives, he was briefly thrust into the spotlight as a 21-year-old suspect in connection with shoplifting a $3 bottle of whisky from Boulder’s Liquor Mart in 1980. The charge was dismissed and the case dropped after witnesses to the reported theft could not be located.
Hunter III also received attention in February 1978 when he told Boulder police that a man approached him and a friend while walking in the 1100 block of University Avenue and demanded to see some identification. The man, later identified by witnesses as John Grubesic, reportedly shot Hunter III in the leg with a small-caliber revolver.
Grubesic pleaded no contest to assault and received three years of probation and one year in jail.
At about the same time, the younger Hunter’s then-future wife was living an often high-profile life, from the New York City literary party world of theÂ¤’80s to Hollywood in theÂ¤’90s to this decade’s boutique spiritual retreats.
She was born in Fort Lauderdale and left Florida in 1984 after being enrolled at the University of Tampa for two years. By 1987, she had ended up in the hard-partying New York circle of novelist Jay McInerney.
McInerney, whose books portrayed the cocaine-fueled atmosphere of New York City in the 1980s, based his third novel, “Story of My Life,” on his time with Druck and their friends. One character, Alison Poole, was specifically modeled after her, McInerney said in a 2005 magazine article. He said that she had “intrigued and appalled” him.
The story, in Breathe Magazine, was primarily a transcript of a discussion between Rielle Hunter and McInerney following their reunion in Manhattan that year.
“For me you’re a little bit frozen in time, a little bit Alison Poole, the 21-year-old party girl in that book who runs around New York going to nightclubs, doing drugs and abusing credit cards,” McInerney said.
She replies that she did a lot of drugs but adds that she was struck by her character’s “need for truth.”
“That’s definitely a theme in my life â seeker of truth,” she tells him.
Hunter tells him that she moved to Los Angeles to become an actress and to get away from the drug scene in New York.
She said she got off drugs in California with the help of a healer.
After the divorce with Hunter III, she attended spiritual retreats and experienced an awakening that was so startling that it took her breath away, then left her unable to leave the house for weeks, she told McInerney.
She started a foundation promoting higher consciousness and set up a Web site, beingisfree.org, but it was taken down soon after the first National Enquirer article on the Edwards affair was published.
In 2006, Edwards’ political action committee paid $100,000 in a four-month span to a newly formed company run by Rielle Hunter, who directed the production of four Web videos showing Edwards in supposedly candid moments as well as in a public speech talking about morality.
The Associated Press and the Raleigh News & Observer contributed to this report.