CHATHAM COUNTY, Ga. — Six people are in custody and one person is still wanted following the seizure of large amounts of marijuana, guns and cash by Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team.
In May 2018, the CNT and the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) opened a joint investigation into a group of individuals believed to be trafficking marijuana throughout Chatham County. Agents identified Joseph Rion Hilliard, 47, and his son, Nicholas Rion Hilliard, 22, as the top tiers of the organization.
Over the course of the three-month operation, agents identified six locations connected to the organization which spread throughout Savannah-Chatham and determined the marijuana was coming in from California. Most locations were determined to be “stash houses” where various amounts of marijuana were being stored.
According to agents, in most cases, the marijuana would then be transported to either Nicholas Hilliard’s residence located at 10305 Middleground Road or Joseph Hilliard’s business, a warehouse, located in the 4200 block of Montgomery Street.
Search warrants from Aug. 8-13 resulted in the seizure of more than 14 pounds of marijuana, 300 capsules of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), concentrated doses of cannabis “Dabs” and various forms of prescription medication. The seized narcotics have an estimated street value of up to $120,000.
Two firearms, one vehicle, and approximately $13,000 in cash were also seized.
Joseph Hilliard; Nathan Andrew Turner, 22; Averie Lynn Shadley, 18; Kyle Preston Terry, 21; John Charles Fuller Jr., 36; and Zachary Ryan Douglas, 30 were arrested.
Nicholas Rion Hilliard is still wanted. He is described as a white male, 6ft tall and 150 lbs. with short/shaved brown hair and blue eyes. Hilliard is known to frequent the Middleground Road area but is believed to be in California.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Hilliard is urged to contact CNT at 912-652-3900 or CrimeStoppers at 912-234-202 where callers remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.