The details of the allegation against the state party chairman, Christian Ziegler, emerged in an affidavit. He has denied any wrongdoing.

New revelations surrounding the accusation against Christian Ziegler, the state party’s head, surfaced in a sworn statement, further complicating matters for the party.

Christian Ziegler, dressed sharply in a navy suit and tie, stands behind a podium labeled Florida GOP, the web address visible on the backdrop.

Christian Ziegler, the chairperson of Florida’s Republican Party, addressing a gathering organized by the group in Kissimmee, Fla., the previous month.Credit…Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

Fresh information from state authorities regarding a sexual assault allegation against the Florida Republican Party’s chairman is exacerbating internal turmoil within the party.

According to the affidavit, a woman alleges that the chairman, Christian Ziegler, assaulted her in her residence back in October. This account was presented in a Florida court as part of a warrant application seeking access to Mr. Ziegler’s digital communications and recordings on his Google account.

A spokesperson for the Sarasota, Fla., Police Department confirmed an “active investigation” involving Mr. Ziegler. Despite no charges having been filed against him, he has refuted any wrongdoing through his attorney, Derek Byrd, who did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday. In a prior statement, Byrd asserted, “We are confident that once the police investigation concludes, no charges will be filed, and Mr. Ziegler will be completely cleared.”

The sworn affidavit details that the woman and Mr. Ziegler had a 20-year acquaintance and that she informed the police she initially consented to a sexual encounter on October 2nd with Mr. Ziegler and his wife, Bridget Ziegler, an elected member of the Sarasota County School Board and a former officer of the right-wing national group Moms for Liberty. (She no longer holds a position in the organization.)

According to the affidavit, Ms. Ziegler stated during an interview with authorities that she and her husband engaged in a single sexual encounter with the woman over a year ago. When the woman discovered that Ms. Ziegler wouldn’t be present for the October encounter, she purportedly changed her mind and canceled with Mr. Ziegler. However, the woman alleged that Mr. Ziegler appeared at her apartment uninvited and sexually assaulted her.

Mr. Ziegler informed authorities that the encounter was consensual and that he recorded a video of it, as stated in the affidavit. Investigators have been unable to locate the video and have consequently issued a search warrant to Google as part of the affidavit. A representative from Google did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday evening.

The details unveiled in the affidavit, which have been disseminated by other news outlets, were initially reported by the Florida Center for Government Accountability, described as a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, and later acquired by The New York Times.

On October 4th, the woman reported that Mr. Ziegler had sexually assaulted her, after which she received treatment and underwent examination at Sarasota Memorial Hospital, according to the affidavit.

Messages exchanged between the woman and Mr. Ziegler post the encounter allegedly involve her expressing her discomfort with the incident, the affidavit noted. Mr. Ziegler repeatedly emphasized their friendship and attempted to divert the conversation.

Furthermore, phone conversations between the woman and Mr. Ziegler, recorded by the woman and detectives, featured her accusing him of sexual assault, to which he responded by denying the allegation and urging her, “Those are big words, please don’t, no I didn’t,” according to the affidavit.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a Republican presidential candidate, has urged Mr. Ziegler to step down. “Given the seriousness of these situations and the ongoing investigation, I don’t see how he can continue,” stated Mr. DeSantis late last week, expressing hope that the allegations were untrue. “He’s innocent until proven guilty, but we cannot have a party chair under such scrutiny.”

In an email to Florida Republican Party members on Saturday, Mr. Ziegler asserted, “We have a country to save, and I will not let baseless accusations halt that mission while this process unfolds.” He alleged being targeted by liberal activists and mentioned receiving unwavering support from Ms. Ziegler, saying, “she is behind me 150 percent.”

Mr. Ziegler assumed the chairmanship this year during discussions among top Florida Republicans regarding potential candidates for the party’s 2024 nomination. He was regarded as the preferred choice of former President Donald J. Trump’s allies.

The Zieglers wield considerable political influence in Florida, particularly in the Sarasota region, which has emerged as a hub of conservative activism following the conclusion of the Trump administration. Moms for Liberty had a close campaign involvement with Mr. DeSantis last year.

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