Former Florida GOP chair Christian Ziegler and his wife, Bridget—known for promoting “family values” and anti-LGBTQ rhetoric—first had a sexual encounter with his rape accuser in 2021 as they “hunted” for a threesome partner, new police records reveal.
While Sarasota cops recently dropped sexual battery charges against Ziegler, who was accused of raping a longtime friend in October, they referred a video voyeurism case to the State Attorney’s Office in connection to footage he recorded of his victim.
Documents from the rape probe, reported in outlets including the Florida Trident and Sarasota Herald-Tribune, show the Zieglers discussing the accuser via text message, with Bridget sharing worries about the woman’s well-being.
Detectives also found a list on Ziegler’s phone, titled “THE LIST,” with the names of multiple women including his rape accuser under a subheading of “Fuck.”
Bridget Ziegler, a cofounder of right-wing “extremist” group Moms for Liberty and a Sarasota school board member, told police that she previously had a three-way encounter with the victim and her husband.
In text messages from February 2021, Christian told Bridget to “come home, stop and pick up [a woman] to play again and be crazy.” It appears he was referring to his rape accuser, whom he then said “was an alcoholic, nice person with some issues.”
Bridget replied that she was concerned the woman was “going through some shit,” and “that she prefers confident empowered people,” according to the documents, adding that Christian said he liked that the woman was “close and there was no drama which turns him on."
“I just don’t want to feel like we ever take advantage of anyone (I know it’s always been consensual) but she seems... ‘broken’ or like she’s going through some (expletive),” Bridget answered. “I don’t know—that’s the vibe I pick up from her—and my nature is more likely to help her versus … ya know.”
Christian suggested the couple “needed to hunt for someone new,” cops stated.
At another point, Christian told Bridget that the woman “thinks she is hot, and he believes she is only into her.”
The victim told police that on the day she was raped, she’d planned a ménage à trois with the Zieglers but that Bridget had backed out. “Sorry I was mostly in for her,” the woman messaged Christian. She claims the GOP boss showed up at her home anyway and assaulted her.
The new records allege that Christian told detectives he had consensual sex with the woman “approximately one dozen times since they met” and that they’d engaged in a threesome with Bridget twice at his home.
Meanwhile, the victim told police that Christian “had been sexually battering her for years, and she never felt like she could say no to him,” including one time when he climbed through an unlocked window in her residence.
After detectives first spoke to Ziegler last year, he made several Google searches on his phone related to their investigation including “Sexual battery settlement average,” “Subpoena Instagram Vanish,” and “Accused of sexual battery and dismissed.”
Other searches included “Only Fans,” “Remove subscriptions from list,” “Sue for false allegations,” and “Cost to file civil suit.”
He also searched for “Faraday bags for tablets, phones and laptops,” which block devices from hacking, location tracking, and EMF radiation.
In wake of his sex scandal, Ziegler, a rising star in the state GOP and delegate for Donald Trump in 2016, was ousted from his $120,000-a-year job as party chair.