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Former Florida GOP chair not charged in alleged sexual assault: Police

Former Florida GOP chair not charged in alleged sexual assault: Police

The Sarasota, Florida Police Department announced Friday they won't be charging Christian Ziegler, the former chair of the Florida Republican Party, following an investigation into a reported sexual assault.

However, investigators said they have forwarded a probable cause affidavit for the felony crime of video voyeurism, after Ziegler allegedly filmed the sexual encounter with a woman without her consent.

Ziegler was accused in October of sexually assaulting a woman with whom he and his wife, Moms for Liberty co-founder and Sarasota County School Board member Bridget Ziegler, had a consensual sexual relationship.

PHOTO: Republican Party of Florida Chairman Christian Ziegler addresses attendees at the Republican Party of Florida Freedom Summit, Nov. 4, 2023, in Kissimmee, Fla. (Phelan M. Ebenhack/AP)
PHOTO: Republican Party of Florida Chairman Christian Ziegler addresses attendees at the Republican Party of Florida Freedom Summit, Nov. 4, 2023, in Kissimmee, Fla. (Phelan M. Ebenhack/AP)

Ziegler, who investigators said was cooperating with the investigation, denied the sexual assault allegations. He has not immediately commented on the latest accusations.

An attorney for him said in a statement in December to news outlets, in part, "We are confident that once the police investigation is concluded that no charges will be filed and Mr. Ziegler will be completely exonerated."

The police said that it "conducted nearly one dozen interviews, issued numerous subpoenas, reviewed hours of surveillance footage, and searched through a substantial number of images and videos on cell phones and their respective cloud data backups."

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During the probe, investigators said they discovered a video of the sexual encounter between Ziegler and the victim that was allegedly recorded on his cell phone.

The video allegedly showed the encounter was consensual and detectives were unable to develop a probable cause to charge Ziegler with sexual battery, according to the Sarasota Police.

When detectives showed the victim the video, she alleged that she did not give consent to being filmed, the police said.

Investigators said they have sent their video voyeurism probable cause affidavit to the State Attorney's Office for further review.

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Earlier this month, the Florida GOP voted him out of his position due to the allegations.

The state party's vice chair, Evan Power, was elected as the new chair.

"What we did today was come together and close this chapter and move on to move forward to continue to win elections in Florida," Power told reporters after the vote.

ABC News' Hannah Demissie contributed to this report.

Former Florida GOP chair not charged in alleged sexual assault: Police originally appeared on abcnews.go.com