‘I’m sad that this has happened’: Naples mayor speaks on ethics allegations

Teresa Heitmann (Credit: WINK News)

The Naples community is supporting its mayor as she battles a seven-page complaint to the state’s Ethics Commission.

Teresa Heitmann is trying to move on from a controversy that continues to rock City Hall.

“You don’t dwell in it and you don’t let false accusations harm you,” she told WINK News on Thursday.

The accusations are detailed in the complaint filed by IT Director Bryan Dye. He writes Heitmann accused former Naples Mayor Bill Barnett and Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk of running a child prostitution ring out of the Naples Airport.

Barnett on Tuesday urged City Council to have the Naples Ethics Commission also investigate.

“Obviously, someone’s lying,” he said.

“I’m sad that this has happened because I certainly wouldn’t want to harm Mayor Bill,” Heitmann said.

The people who showed at her “Conversations with the Mayor” event support her.

“I 100 percent am for the mayor and I think she is a person of integrity,” said Beth Petrunoff.

“That anyone would make any more out of this I think is ludicrous,” said Jim Boula.

Heitmann said it’s tough to put this behind her as she’s still under investigation.

“I think people want to distract me from continuing to be mayor and to do the work I need to do.”

She vows to continue to work as she waits for the investigation’s results.

Barnett would not provide WINK News with a copy of the complaint. We’re working to get a copy from the City.

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