Sheriff Chuck Smith reported that on January 18, 2014, Saturday, at 10:30 p.m. numerous officers representing various law enforcement agencies, and our Animal Control Officer Beth Miller, converged on a location off Happy Hollow Drive (approximately 4-5 miles northeast of Greenville) off State Highway 362, commonly known as Callaway Road to conduct a well orchestrated raid of a criminally organized dog fighting event. Air support, (2 helicopters), were provided by the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.
“Our narcotics unit has worked tirelessly on gathering intelligence on the event and at a moment’s notice they “rallied up” and met at the training center where a briefing was conducted. Their efforts included air support, compliments of Sheriff Mike Yeager and Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources. When the helicopter pilots “hit their target” with spot lights participants and spectators ran into the arms of waiting officers holding a perimeter around the event. A large “fighting pit” was noticed with an emaciated, bleeding, crippled female pit bullterrier. Our animal control officer took this dog and another into protective custody. A large catering truck “Express Wings” was set up with fried chicken and fish was being served to participants and spectators during the event. At the preliminary conclusion of our agent’s investigation – roughly $28,253.00 in currency was seized, 27 vehicles including the catering truck, 34 offenders, 5 guns, 2 generators and lighting equipment and 1 dog fighting pit and scales were seized. According to F.B.I. intelligence, one of the offenders is wanted by U.S. Marshals on a federal indictment accusing him of dog fighting. One of the seized guns was reported stolen to the Manchester Police Department.” Smith stated.
“I am saddened by what I saw at this crime scene; however, I am very proud of all these law enforcement officers that were involved. We know in the dog fighting world, these events carry the highest potential of being extremely dangerous. All officers displayed the highest level of professionalism while showing “armed” force to minimize the risk of getting hurt or hurting others.” Sheriff Smith stated.
“Animal Control Officer Beth Miller advised that she was hopeful that the dog found in this pit could be saved. I’m appreciative to her for assisting us.” Smith advised.
“Agencies involved include: Meriwether County Deputies & Investigators, our Narcotics unit, Woodbury Police, Greenville Police, DNR Rangers with the Department of Natural Resources, Spalding County Sheriff’s Deputies, Coweta County Sheriff’s Crime Suppression Unit, the Coweta County Sheriffs and Department of Natural Resources Aviation Units. Our scene investigation finished up at about 0330 a.m., January 19, 2014 with our investigative units and narcotics units finishing up around 0900 hrs. This matter is still under investigation.” Smith advised.
Charges include: Gambling, Cruelty to Animal(s), Possession of a Firearm During Commission of a Crime, Theft By Receiving Stolen Property, any charge involving Conspiracy to commit or promote dog fighting, along with other crimes associated with this dog fighting operation.
“We have local offenders involved in this dog fighting operation with several suspects being from the states of Alabama, Arkansas and Michigan. This was an organized event promoted by those in the dog fighting and gambling underworld. I am very appreciative to all of the agencies that assisted us bring down this illegal operation and I hope that I did not leave anyone out.” Sheriff Smith stated.
Those arrested: • Toney Bernard Wright • Milton Williams Jr.• Derrick Anthony Grier • Demario A Ferguson • Antwaun Mahone • Kenny Junior Mahone • Xavier Fernando Blalock • Blake Deon Revell • Trevor Jerrod Jones • Michael Darnell Adaway • Tommy K Williams • Kentravis V Revell • Bernard W Gilliam • Rafeal J Chambers • Kevin Terrell Burton • Mario Santell Prather • Ronald Lewis Kirkwood • Sydney Robidas Owens • John Fitzgerald Jackson • Eric Lee Williams • Andre Leroy Jamison • Alan Bumbrey • Travis Montfort • Travis D Cameron • Shaquille D Heard • Marco Martex Finley • Roger Lee Riley • Randy Hall • Demetrice C Potts • Landy Trimaine Willis • Latoskie Tama Williams • Willie Edward Wright • Maxine Hall • William Jackson.