TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ Florida authorities are investigating whether any laws were violated during the making of a tape recording that features a conversation between two employees in the office of Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokeswoman Heather Smith said Friday the investigation was launched this week after the agency received a complaint regarding the audio recording.
The Florida Times-Union obtained a copy of the conversation between John Konkus, Carroll's chief of staff and Carletha Cole, a senior program analyst who also acted as a spokeswoman for Carroll.
The Times-Union reported that Konkus can be heard on the recording saying that Gov. Rick Scott's chief of staff is afraid of Carroll. Konkus also complained that Scott “is not leading.'' Konkus worked for U.S. Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Ocala, before joining the Scott administration in May.
Cole herself was fired last week after publicly speaking out about infighting in Carroll's office.
It is against Florida law to record someone without consent. But there have been legal questions about recordings made in public buildings.
“We are reviewing the situation to see whether there were any potential violations of Florida law,'' Smith said.
Smith declined to say who filed the complaint that triggered the investigation. She said the results of the inquiry will be turned over to State Attorney Willie Meggs of Tallahassee.
Carroll, a former state legislator tapped last year as Scott's running mate, refused to answer any questions during a visit Friday to Pensacola.
“I can't comment on an ongoing investigation,'' Carroll said.
Konkus referred questions to Scott's press office. A spokesman for Scott also said he could not answer any questions due to the pending investigation.
In 2005, a Miami Herald columnist was fired for failing to get permission to record telephone conversations he had with a former city commissioner under investigation for federal corruption.