New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell criticized a reporter following up on claims that she had an extramarital affair with her bodyguard, claiming that it’s based on sexism.
The embattled mayor was identified by news outlets in the divorce papers submitted to detective Jeffrey Vappie, 50, who worked as Cantrell’s bodyguard, claiming he cheated on his wife, Danielle, with a ‘Mrs. L.C.’
Cantrell, also 50, denied the allegations to local outlet Nola.com, texting a reporter that it was just one of the latest ‘false accusations’ levied against her.
‘By the time I complete my tenure as mayor, I would have slept with half of the City of New Orleans based on false accusations that come my way sometimes daily,’ Cantrell told the local reporter. ‘This is only one of them.
‘If I were a MAN you would NOT be texting me about this bulls***.’
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell (pictured) told a local reporter asking about allegations of an extramarital affair that the claims were based on sexism
Reports emerged that divorce papers filed to New Orleans detective Jeffery Vappie (above) state he admitted to having a sexual relationship with a Mrs. L.C.
Since 2022, Fox New Orleans have broadcast numerous videos showing Mayor Latoya Cantrell and her bodyguard Jeffrey Vappie going into a city-owned apartment together
Attorneys for Vappie, who is currently suspended amid an investigation over irregularities to his pay, told NOLA that the detective has never admitted to his wife that he was in a sexual relationship with the mayor.
Danielle alleges that her husband and Cantrell have been carrying on the affair since May 2021, the same month that he began working on the mayor’s security detail.
She also claims the affair is ongoing, and that Vappie told her about it.
Vappie’s attorney stopped short of denying that an affair ever happened, citing the current investigation on their client.
Vappie finds himself under scrutiny over the hours he was alleged to be clocking in. In January 2022, he was also accused of spending $916 for a single night in a hotel room in Washington DC.
He eventually found himself embroiled in Cantrell’s own hotel controversy. Since October 2021, Cantrell’s decision to bring security on trips has cost taxpayers more than $50,000, Fox 8 News calculated.
Vappie also spent 112 hours at her apartment over a 27 day stretch, and was even seen watering her plants.
Last year, Fox New Orleans reported that Vappie spent more than five hours of his workday with Cantrell in a publicly owned apartment in the city’s Upper Pontalba section, where they were often spotted together.
Jeffrey Vappie’s wife, Danielle, shown here, is a school principal in New Orleans. She claims the affair began in May 2021, when Vappie joined Cantrell’s security detail
Mayor Latoya Cantrell pictured with her husband, Jason (left). She has denied the allegations
The affair allegation is just the latest trouble hitting the New Orleans mayor, who is currently battling a recall effort amid numerous financial scandals.
In November 2022, it was reported that Cantrell upgraded hotel bookings to stay in king suites during trips she made to Washington DC and San Francisco in January and April, potentially incurring costs of around $2,400.
The cities policy dictates: ‘Upgrades for hotel accommodations at the expense of the city are not permitted unless the hotel is unable to provide allowable accommodations at the time necessary to carry out the purpose of travel.’
And a month earlier, Cantrell was required to pay back almost $30,000 to the city after violating its policy by upgrading her flights to first class and claiming initially that economy flights were unsafe for black women.
‘My travel accommodations are a matter of safety, not of luxury,’ Cantrell, who earns approximately $188,000 a year, said at the time.
Hotel Washington in Washington DC where Cantrell spent nearly $2,500 on a king suite
The Hyatt Regency SOMA in San Francisco where Cantrell stayed and incurred a cost of nearly $2,000. She is currently facing scrutiny after similar upgrade charges for first-class flights
Cantrell is facing questions over money paid to her stylist, Tanya Haynes (pictured)
Cantrell is also facing questions about $175,000 in payments made since 2017 from her campaign to her ‘image consultant’, Tanya Haynes, and her business, Jolie Image Consulting.
The payments to Haynes have generally increased over time, reaching $6,000 per month in 2021, the records obtained by 4WWL show.
Two stores where Haynes shopped – Ballin’s Boutique, where she often bought clothes for the mayor, and BC Kitchen and Bath, where Haynes recently ordered a new $17,000 kitchen – have been subpoenaed.
Amid the corruption allegations, Cantrell faces a recall effort, but it is unlikely to go through as her opposition has only five weeks to collect more than 20,000 signatures to get the measure on a ballot, Fox News reports.
Cantrell became the first woman elected as mayor of New Orleans in 2018. She is married to lawyer Jason Cantrell, and the couple have a daughter together, RayAnn.
The state of their marriage remains unclear as Jason is no longer mentioned on the mayor’s official biography page.
The mayor last mentioned her husband on Twitter in June 2021 when she wished him a happy birthday.