Naples mayor says complaint against her meant to sabotage reputation

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:
Naples Mayor Teresa Heitmann. Credit: WINK News.

An ethics complaint by City IT Director Brian Dye against the mayor in the City of Naples has brought forward serious accusations. It brought up allegations of corruption and child prostitution involving high-ranking leaders in Naples and Collier County.

We sat down with Mayor Teresa Heitmann who told us the complaint doesn’t look like something the IT director would write.

Heitmann believes the IT director was put up to it and she says a seven-page complaint is meant to sabotage her reputation.

“It’s shocking and impurely accusations that have potentially now harmed important relationships with the city,” Heitmann said.

The complaint claims Heitmann accused the former mayor and Sheriff Kevin Rambosk of running a child sex ring out of Naples Airport.

“How anyone would put together the former mayor with the sheriff at the airport with child prostitution is unacceptable, and I never said it, and it’s shocking,” Heitmann said.

The complaint claims Heitmann had evidence of flight arrival times and numbers involved in a so-called prostitution ring.

Heitmann says it’s a political attack.

Dye filed the complaint over a week ago, and it’s now in the hands of the Florida Ethics Commission.

“He worked for the city when I was on city council. He’s been a longtime employee,” Heitmann said. “The first thing I said was he didn’t write this.”

The complaint says Heitmann believed city employees hacked her and a friend, and that she directed Dye to violate Sunshine Law.

“I never said that the city manager hacked my emails. I said that I thought there was a breach of emails and an issue with my computer,” Heitmann said. “I asked that we’d have this technology audit be discussed in a Sunshine session because it’s sensitive material, sensitive information, security, technology vulnerabilities.”

Among the allegations, Heitmann does admit hiring an outside law firm to, what she describes, “give her advice,” on unsolved business with the city’s former attorney and former city manager, both positions that have undergone changes under Heitmann’s leadership.

“I’ve worked very hard to be an ethical, transparent council member and mayor,” Heitmann said. “And trying to make positive change for the city, sometimes people come at you to deflect what good you may be accomplishing.”

After hearing Heitmann’s statement to the allegations, Sheriff Rambosk said he is satisfied that she never made them, and it resolves the controversy.

We reached out to the IT director who filed a complaint, but we haven’t heard back.

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