n an undercover operation spanning 5 months, deputy sheriffs have charged twenty eight people with drug offenses related to trafficking and illegal distribution of methamphetamine, marijuana, and prescription narcotics. On Friday, April 15th, teams of deputies armed with arrest warrants deployed throughout the county to arrest the 18 defendants who were not already in custody. As of today (April 18th) all but five (5) defendants have been apprehended. The investigation, dubbed, “Operation FULL COVERAGE” by sheriff’s detectives, involved hundreds of man-hours of undercover work, covert physical surveillance, and extensive electronic surveillance. Detectives also executed 7 search warrants throughout the course of the 5 month investigation, resulting in the seizure of drugs, firearms, and electronic devices.
The following persons were arrested Friday through Sunday (April 15-17):
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Wally Keith Joyner, 1143 Brackett Ridge Road, Chatsworth, Georgia, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
Christopher Shea Satterfield, age 25, 440 Owens Gin Road, Calhoun, Georgia, charged with multiple Sales of Methamphetamine, and sale of Schedule II Narcotics
Candace Lynn Satterfield, age 36, 440 Owens Gin Road, Calhoun, Georgia, charged with multiple Sales of Methamphetamine, and sale of Schedule II Narcotics
Crystal Faye Smith, age 33, 742 Hightower Loop, Ranger, Georgia, charged with multiple Sales of Methamphetamine and multiple Sales of Schedule II Narcotics
Kyle Collum Carter, 841 Cass-Pine Log Road, Rydal, Georgia, charged with multiple Sales of Marijuana
Lillian Yvonne Helston, age 27, 322 Franklin Road, Plainville, Georgia, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
Marcus Sintel Williams, age 37, 322 Franklin Road, Plainville, Georgia, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
Deborah Ruth Pilcher, age 63, 255 Park Drive, Calhoun, Georgia, charged with Sale of Methamphetamine, Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute, & Possession of Tools for the Commission of a Crime
Barry Keith Pilcher, age 58, 255 Park Drive, Calhoun, Georgia, charged with multiple Sales of Methamphetamine, Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute, & Possession of Tools for the Commission of a Crime
Ronnie Dale Young, age 56, 184 Hall Memorial Road, Calhoun, Georgia, charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine and multiple Sales of Methamphetamine
Virginia Cara Hamrick, age 40, 109 Middle Road, Ranger, Georgia, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
Heath Lee Rhymer, age 43, 109 Middle Road, Ranger, Georgia, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
Kim Junior Redd, 36B County Line Road, Rydal, Georgia, charged with Sale of Methamphetamine
The following persons were already in custody in the Gordon County Jail on Friday, April 15 having been arrested earlier as part of the same investigation:
Bobby Gene Goforth, age 43, charged with Trafficking Methamphetamine and other charges
Timothy Daniel Lumpkin, age 46, charged with Trafficking Methamphetamine and other charges
Stephanie Lynn Baldwin, age 31, charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine and other charges
Heather Susanne Jones, age 41, charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine and other charges
Justin Robert Hunter, age 2, charged with multiple Sales of Methamphetamine
Justin Leon Mulkey, age 36, charged with Sale of Methamphetamine
Steven Douglas Roebuck, age 47, charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine and other charges
Amanda Michelle Shelton, age 33, charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine
Ronnie Lamar Thomas, age 62, charged with Possession of Methamphetamine
All defendants are being held in the county jail pending judicial proceedings.
The ‘street value’ of the methamphetamine seized in this case exceeded $82,000. A number of illegally held firearms were also seized from defendants.
Seven (7) defendants were on probation and/or parole at the time of their arrest. Fourteen (14) defendants have previous drug-related arrests in Gordon County. Five defendants still at large are actively being sought by deputies.
Some defendants are cooperating with detectives and more arrests are possible.
Trafficking” in methamphetamine is defined under law as the possession of more than twenty eight (28) grams of the illicit drug. Traffickers are essentially wholesale suppliers, who generally sell methamphetamine to ‘street level’ dealers who in turn sell the drug to users. The huge majority of methamphetamine is believed to originate in Mexico and is transported into our community by automobile. Methamphetamine ‘laboratories’ once popular, are now very rare. Trafficking is the most serious of Georgia’s drug related offenses, punishable by mandatory sentencing if defendants plead or are found guilty.
Sheriff Ralston said, “ I want to praise the detectives and deputies involved in this case for all of their hard work and dedication in helping to rid our community of the pollution of methamphetamine and other drugs. Drug-related investigations are tedious and time consuming. I’d also like to sincerely thank the private citizens in the county who provided the information to my staff and myself which made this case and these arrests possible. We urge anyone with an addiction or substance abuse problem to seek help. We also urge anyone with information about the distribution of drugs to call our Office. As you can see here, I will hold those people who choose to bring this poison into our community accountable.”
PHOTOS: Deputies in pre-arrest operation briefing (above), and deputies arresting a defendant Friday, April 15 (lower right)