NAPLES, FL - August 5, 2020 - According to an online news report posted on NaplesNews.com, a candidate running for District 1, Collier County Commission Office, was arrested in East Naples, Florida. The arrest happened over the weekend. The suspect, a 55-year-old man, was processed and booked into the Naples Jail Center. According to the arrest report provided by the Collier County Sheriff's Office, the suspect faces one charge of felony possession of cocaine. The suspect posted a $5,000 bail bond, and he was released that day.
The suspect was the only Democrat running for the District 1 Commissioner officer, which includes Marco Island, East Naples, and communities from Copeland to the Isles of Capri. A spokesperson for the suspect's campaign stated that once the investigation is over, charges against the suspect will be either dismissed or dropped. The spokesperson stated that there is more to the case than what was put into the arrest report. Following the suspect's arrest, the county's Democratic Party leaders requested the suspect terminate his campaign. A Collier County Democratic Party chairwoman stated that the suspect should withdraw from his candidacy for the District 1 County Commission. The Collier County Supervisor of Elections Office qualifying officer stated that the suspect is not required by law to withdraw from the County Commission race.
Collier County Sheriff's deputies were called out to the 4600 block of Gulfstream Drive in reference to a drug-related incident that occurred at approximately 2:30 in the morning on Sunday. A Lyft driver called the police and reported that he discovered a passed out man lying down in the Break Time Lounge parking lot.
The Collier County Sheriff's deputies stated in the arrest report that the suspect was discovered lying in the Break Time Lounge parking lot, and he was calling out for his Lyft driver. According to the arrest report, the suspect had multiple injuries to his face, abrasions on his legs, and a swollen, black eye.
When the Collier County Sheriff's deputies spoke with the suspect and asked the suspect what happened, the suspect stated that he fell down in the parking lot. The Collier County Sheriff's deputies stated in the arrest report that the man was "clearly intoxicated," and the suspect stated that he consumed four drinks inside the Break Time Lounge. The news report stated that the suspect was "sweating profusely," and the man appeared to have "urinated himself" while he was lying down on the ground. The Collier County Sheriff's deputies questioned the suspect about drug usage. However, the suspect stated that he only consumed alcoholic beverages.
EMS personnel were dispatched to the scene, and the suspect was searched to ensure the EMS personnel were safe. The suspect allegedly consented to the search, and the Collier County Sheriff's deputies discovered a "small plastic bag containing a white powdery substance" inside the suspect's pocket. The weight of the bag was 0.4 grams, according to the arrest report. The deputies questioned the suspect about the contents of the bag. The suspect stated that he wasn't sure what was inside the bag. The Collier County Sheriff's deputies performed a field-tested the white powdery substance, and the substance tested positive for cocaine. The Collier County Sheriff's deputies read the suspect his Miranda Rights. The suspect was placed into handcuffs, and he was transported to NCH Baker Hospital Downtown. Following the suspect's medical treatment, the suspect was transported to the Naples Jail Center.