The Federal Bureau of Investigation has completed an investigation of the mayor of the US city of Anchorage, who was accused of posting photos of his genitalia to an underage girls' website. The investigation, conducted together with local police, revealed that there is no "immediate evidence to support a violation of federal law; however, the FBI Anchorage Field Office continues to monitor the situation".
The story started on 9 October after Maria Athens, the anchor of a combined FOX/ABC tv station, posted a statement and a video on her Facebook page saying that Mayor Ethan Berkowitz "posted x rated photos on an underage girls website". In her post, Athens, who promised to break the story on the TV station, cited "reliable sources".
That same day the mayor’s office denied the allegations, saying:
"The slanderous allegations from Your Alaska Link reporter Maria Athens are categorically false and appear to be the product of someone who is hostile and unwell."
The mayor’s office also said that it spoke with Athens' employer, Scott Centers, who "emphatically disavowed" the woman’s claims.
On 10 October things turned wild after Maria Athens posted a photo of what she claims was the mayor’s nude backside. Two days later, on 12 October Ethan Berkowitz resigned and revealed that he had “a consensual, inappropriate messaging relationship” with Athens. Berkowitz, who is married, did not respond to questions as to why he didn’t acknowledge his relationship with Athens when his office released a statement calling the anchor “hostile and unwell”.
"It is with profound sadness and humility that I resign as Mayor of the Municipality of Anchorage. My resignation results from unacceptable personal conduct that has compromised my ability to perform my duties with the focus and trust that is required. I know my conduct has done great injury to my family, my staff, to Municipal employees, and to the people of our community, and for that, I am deeply sorry. To make this transition as smooth as possible, my resignation will be effective Friday, October 23", the mayor said in a statement.
In response, Athens revealed that her relationship with Berkowitz started in 2016, but she declined to elaborate whether it became sexual.
The situation exacerbated after The Alaska Landmine obtained a voicemail Athens sent to Berkowitz, where the anchor calls Berkowitz a “pedophile” and threatens to kill him and his wife.
"I will personally kill you and Mara Kimmel, you Jewish piece of living f**king s**t. You have met you match. I can’t believe I am such a good person and thought I loved you. I don’t even hate you. I will pray for your Zionist f**king ass. … And I’m putting this on the news tonight. Bye. Have a great Friday”, Athens said, adding that she will win an Emmy for her reporting.
Athens reportedly sent the voicemail after she was arrested by police on October 9, the day she first made her claim about the mayor on her Facebook page. According to court documents, the woman trespassed into the studio after she was told she could not return there. Athens also had a fight with the TV station’s manager Scott Centers. The charging documents said she punched Centers in the face several times and hit him with her cellphone. She also hit the officer trying to arrest her and was placed in full restraints after trying to kick out a window of a police car.
Athens said she did not touch the officer and was "never in full restraints". Her story on the TV station wasn’t aired.