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Jersey man suspected of threatening to kill Volusia County Sheriff after criticism of neo-Nazis

Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood at a press conference.
Via YouTube
Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood holds up a photo of Richard Golden during a press conference on Tuesday afternoon.

An online discussion about Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood's public criticism of neo-Nazis led to the arrest Monday of a 38-year-old man at his mother's house in Monmouth Junction, N.J.

An affidavit from the Seventh Judicial Circuit State Attorney's Office says that on Feb. 22 Richard Golden wrote: "Just shoot Chitwood in the head and murder him."

For that and similar statements on the 4chan platform, Golden was arrested on a felony warrant for written threat to kill or injure.

The affidavit says that Golden admitted posting the comments but said he was not part of a hate group and did not plan to act on them.

State Attorney's Office investigators had teamed up with the FBI and New Jersey police to track him down.

Golden is being held in the Middlesex County Corrections Center pending extradition to Volusia County, according to the Volusia County Sheriff's Office.

At a press conference, the sheriff said: “I cannot wait to meet him when he gets off the plane because one of the first faces he’s going to see welcoming him to the Volusia County Jail, the happiest place on earth, is going to be me.”

Chitwood said there are other subpoenas out related to social media from a neo-Nazi group.

Antisemitic extremists have been increasingly active in Central Florida, Jacksonville and South Florida. Groups have thrown anti-Jewish fliers in yards, projected symbols and messages on buidlings, and shouted antisemitic slurs during protests.

Chitwood has spoken out forcefully against them.

He's selling "Scumbag Eradication Team" T-shirts to counter extremism through the department's youth foundation.

"The best way to defeat or at least contain extremism is through unity and sunshine," Chitwood said. "And the best way to make sure that we don't have it is education. Education eradicates hate."

Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.
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