Volusia County

‘He gets things done’: Embattled former Mount Dora police chief up for new position with Deltona code enforcement

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — The former Mount Dora police chief who was ousted in 2019 after an investigation found he made a racially insensitive comment and ran a department fraught with distrust could soon have a new job.

John O’Grady is in line for a new position with the city of Deltona’s code enforcement.

The city will decide if it will hire O’Grady at its meeting on Monday.

READ: Mount Dora police chief fired after investigation into racially insensitive comments

John Peters III, acting city manager, told Channel 9 he knows O’Grady and they worked together for five years in Mount Dora. He said he trusts and believes O’Grady is the man needed to revamp code.

“He is a change agent. He gets things done,” Peters said.

However, others feel given those allegations in the past, this is not the direction the city should go.

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Deltona resident Dayle Whitman said over the phone she’s concerned.

“There’s a lot of controversy going on behind that person,” she said. “We don’t need that.”

But Peters said he trusts O’Grady.

“I’m willing to take the heat for someone who may have a quote, ‘checkered past,’ and put it out there for the public to see,” Peters said. “And I’m also willing to say I’ve looked at the negatives and positives and I believe the positives are the way to go.”

Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.