Flood Warning issued July 21 at 9:51PM EDT expiring July 22 at 10:51AM EDT in effect for: Pasco
A Siesta Key man is charged with scamming tourists with his vacation home and attacking a government official with a bucket of urine.
Craig Siegel bonded out Monday from the Sarasota County Jail.
Siegel accused the government of over regulation.
"Did you advertise a 12 bedroom house that had five bedrooms?" an ABC Action News reporter asked Siegel.
"No comment on that,” he responded. “That is an on-going litigation. I would love to comment on that though."
Denise Blair wants to hear the answer. Last year she gave Siegel a down payment of $2,500 to rent a 12-bedroom house, where she planned to fly her friends and family in from across the country for her birthday celebration.
"I am just glad to hear that he has gotten arrested,” she said. “It's wrong. It's so wrong."
Blair was supposed to be vacationing in the Siesta Key home starting last Sunday with a birthday celebration Saturday.
When she found out it was actually a five bedroom house, she called her guests and told them not to fly in.
"Wedding parties, family reunions needed a place of that magnitude they could put all their family members in," Detective Mark LeFebvre said.
He added large groups needed the space and were surprised they had been duped into a smaller house.
Detectives said Siegel kept deposits from $1,100 to the full week rental of more than $5,000 from Blair and other victims as far away as California.
"The victims did everything right. They went to reputable websites. They were listed companies. They signed contracts,” LeFebvre said.
As a warrant for Siegel's arrest was being processed, a Sarasota code enforcement officer knocked on Siegel's door at his home.
Detectives said Siegel walked up behind the officer and threw urine in a bucket at him.
Siegel did not seem remorseful saying, "Showing up at seven o'clock in the morning is what I am talking about as far as government over regulations. Sneaking around."
Siegel went on to say code fines of more than $40,000 tied up his money.
"I have taken steps in taking care of those people,” he said. “If you guys can report on that and the good things I have done, that would be wonderful. If it can be a fair sided interview. So they will get their money back? Absolutely. Absolutely."
Blair wants the courts to impose a repayment to make sure the victims get their money back. She hopes others are not duped into renting the home.