FMPD police captain arrested on charges of solicitation of prostitution, official misconduct, perjury

A Fort Myers Police Department captain is accused of soliciting prostitution while on duty as well as official misconduct and perjury related to an incident alleged to have happened at a massage parlor in 2013.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement agents arrested Jay Rodriguez, 46, of Cape Coral on Tuesday following an investigation that began Feb. 12 of this year at the request of the FMPD.

“The investigation shows that Rodriguez solicited and engaged in prostitution with a female massage therapist while on duty and acting in an undercover capacity during a massage parlor operation in Fort Myers on March 14, 2013. Rodriguez authored a falsified account of his actions during the operation, which was relied upon by the arresting officer to affect the arrests of two women at the massage parlor,” an FDLE release issued Tuesday states.

“Rodriguez also committed perjury when he made a false statement under oath during an official FMPD internal affairs investigation on January 8, 2019, stating that he had never engaged in sex while on duty.”

FMPD Chief Derrick Diggs issued a statement following the arrest, saying he …”immediately placed Rodriguez on unpaid administrative leave pending the outcome of the case as it proceeds through the judicial system.”

“On February 12, 2019, at my request, The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) began an independent investigation into allegations of serious misconduct during a 2013 undercover operation, involving FMPD Captain Jay Rodriguez,” Diggs said in the statement. “The Fort Myers Police Department cooperated fully with the investigation providing FDLE with any and all information requested. Today, the investigation concluded with the arrest of Rodriguez by FDLE for 3rd Degree Felony Official Misconduct, 3rd Degree Felony Perjury in an Official Proceeding and 1st Degree Misdemeanor Solicitation of Prostitution.”

State law prevents him from commenting directly on the allegations or the investigation itself, Diggs said, adding he did want to make the following statement:

“Although the incident occurred 3 years prior to my arrival, I take any allegations of misconduct by our officers seriously,” Diggs said. “His actions should in no way reflect on the character and integrity of this organization or the men and women who tirelessly work every day to protect the good people of Ft Myers.”

Rodriguez was released from the Lee County Jail on bond shortly after noon Tuesday. The bond amount for the three counts totaled $4,000 – $1,500 each for the misconduct and perjury charges and $1,000 for solicitation of prostitution, according to Lee County Jail records.

The case will be prosecuted by the Office of the State Attorney, 12th Judicial Circuit.

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