The woman who investigators said Gov. Eliot Spitzer chose for a sexual tryst — a dalliance that sparked his tumble from the highest perch of power in New York State — has been identified in published reports as a 22-year-old New Jersey native with humble roots.

The woman, known only as “Kristen” until now, was legally named Ashley Youmans but now calls herself Ashley Alexandra Dupre, The New York Times reported.
Dupré, 22, a former resident of Belmar, N.J., lives in a Flatiron District apartment where a throng of media showed up last night.

Kristen, according to an investigation, met with Spitzer on Feb. 13 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington for sex, a meet-up arranged through the international call-girl outfit called the Emperor’s Club.

Spitzer, who was referred to by an FBI agent in an affidavit as Client 9, paid $4,300 for the session, one of many that investigators said he had with women employed by the prostitution ring that operated in several cities worldwide.

Spitzer, who announced his resignation yesterday, may have paid up to $80,000 for such services over time. The outfit ranked women by their physical assets and other traits, and charged as much as $5,500 per hour. Kristen was described in an affidavit as “an American, petite, very pretty brunette, 5 feet, 5 inches, and 105 pounds.”
Dupré describes herself on her MySpace page as a lover of music. The page is candid, reciting the disturbing details of a hard life.

“I am all about my music, and my music is all about me,” she writes. “It flows from what I’ve been through, what I’ve seen and how I feel. I live in New York and am on top of the world. Been here since 2004 and I love this city, I love my life here.

“But my path has not been easy. When I was 17, I left home. It was my decision and I’ve never looked back. Left my hometown. Left a broken family. Left abuse. Left an older brother who had already split. Left and learned what it was like to have everything, and lose it, again and again.”

The page also contains audio of one of Dupré’s own tracks, “What We Want,” sung in a seductive voice in which she coos, “I know what you want. You’ve got what I want.”
It continues: “Can you handle me, boy? Can you take my hand and carry me, boy?”

An attorney who represented Dupré before a grand jury looking into the case said: “We are not confirming or denying that she is Kristen.”

But the attorney, Don Buchwald, said the basic biographical story reported about Dupré’s life is accurate. He said Magistrate Michael H. Dolinger appointed him to represent Dupré.

When reached at the family’s Jackson, N.J., home, a man who identified himself as Dupré’s brother said: “Ashley is my sister, and I have no comment.”

A message left at her Manhattan apartment was not returned.

A woman who lives on the same floor of the high rise on West 25th Street said she was shocked about Dupré’s alleged role in the scandal. “I know she’s not leaving her apartment right now,” said the neighbor, who identified herself only as Alina.

Nick Hanson of South Huntington was surprised to find out that someone on his MySpace friends list was involved in the Spitzer saga.

“I really never met her or talked to her,” he said. “I just added her as a friend,” after she sent him an invitation. “It seemed like she was very interested in music.”

( March 13, 2008)
Staff writers Denise M. Bonilla, Eden Laikin, Tim Healy, Anthony M. DeStefano and Karla Schuster contributed to this story.