Photos for Headline Surfer / Shown above left is Gregory Fournier, an ex-con who spent time in a Texas penitentiary fback in the 1980s for writing a slew of bad checks. Fournier, who has offered his services in the last decade as a political consultant, was paid $3,000 by-then Daytona Beach Police Chief Mike Chitwood, shown above right, operating a crane in demolishing a building for Daytona International Speedway in a photo op during his 2016 election campaign for sheriff. Two-thirds of Chitwood's campaign funding came from the influential insiders.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Not only did Mike Chitwood rely on Daytona's influential insiders to fund two-thirds of his 2016 campaign for sheriff, the then-police chief also paid $3,000 to an ex-con for political advice.
Headline Surfer discovered the amount Chitwood paid to Gregory Fournier while combing through his campaign finance reports filed with the Supervisor of Elections for Volusia County.
Chitwood has come under fire for his stepped-up verbal attacks on Volusisa County government officials, elected leaders and even his elected predecessor, Ben Johnson, who is seeking the at-large seat on the County Council in this election cycle.
And while Chitwood has raised the vitriol to unprecedented levels, with unsubstantiated allegations and even blatant lying while conveniently leaving out his own conflicts of interest with the lastest round of sustained sustained attacks dating back to the beginning of June.
While Chitwood has relied mostly on Facebook where he has drones -- or loyal followers -- who reiterate his posts without question and attack any outsiders who dsisagree.
Chitwood's also benefitted from his strong media connections, especially with Marc Bernier, the talk show host on WNDB Radio, and with Pat Rice, editor of the Daytona Beach News-Journal.
Chitwood also relies on two bloggers -- Mark Barker, a retired Holly Hill police chief -- and David Lee Davis, a political consultant and twice-failed candidate for elected office.
Perhaps Chitwood's boldest move in this newest round of attacks was appearing in person at the County Council meeting