Marco Island's new city manager faces investigation, accused of battery

Lisa Conley
Marco Eagle
Marco Island City Manager Lee Niblock

Marco Island's new city manager Lee Niblock faces a pending investigation after being accused of battery, according to the Marco Island Police Department.

Marco Police Chief Al Schettino emailed the Marco Island City Council and city attorney Friday night informing them of the battery allegation, which the department received Feb. 8. 

He also told them that the Collier County Sheriff's Office will be in charge of the investigation since Niblock oversees the Police Department.

A spokeswoman said the Sheriff's Office hasn't started the investigation because it's still receiving information from the Police Department. 

More:New year, new manager: Niblock gets running start on first full year

More:Marco Island City Council names Lee Niblock as new city manager

More:Hernstadt resigns, Marco Island City Council begins search for new city manager

According to the state of Florida, a person commits battery when he or she "actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other."

Niblock said he doesn't know the details of the allegation but said he's confident he'll be vindicated.

"I am aware an allegation has been made against me based upon the public announcement of a criminal investigation published by Police Chief Al Schettino in an email to the Marco Island City Council," Niblock said Monday afternoon.

"On the advice of counsel, I will not be able to comment further at this time. I look forward to the completion of any full investigation, which I am confident will vindicate me completely."

Niblock was the county manager of Alachua County in Central Florida from 2014 until his dismissal in September because of differing views between him and the commission.

The Marco Island City Council hired Niblock in November, and he began working for the city in December.

City Council Chairman Jared Grifoni said he's aware of the allegation but would not comment further, citing the ongoing investigation.

Council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the community room, 51 Bald Eagle Drive.