GBI agents collect evidence at the Uplift personal care home in Morven
Linwood Yates (left) and Steve Turner (right)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -
Information from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation-
On Thursday, June 19, 2014, at approximately 8 am, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Brooks County Sheriff's Office, Morven Police Department and Lowndes County Sheriff'sOffice initiated the execution of two simultaneous search warrants at Uplift, 7752 GA HWY 133,Morven, GA (Brooks County) and 7478 Chase Way, Hahira, GA (Lowndes County).
WALB was at Uplift in Morven shortly after the raid was conducted there. Morven Police Chief Linwood Yates said the patients in the facility at the time were very happy to see the officers.
"A lot of 'em were thanking us, yes," said Yates. "We actually got an applause from a few members in there."
GBI Special Agent In charge Steve Turner, of the GBI's Thomasville Bureau, said this raid sends a strong message.
"The message we're tryin' to send is," said Turner, "if you're gonna run a home like this, the state of Georgia's not gonna tolerate it."
The execution of the search warrants was the result of a two month criminal investigation and also resulted in the following arrests and charges:
Tyrone Terrell, Owner of Uplift, 59, of 6390 Whispering Oaks Drive North, Jacksonville,Florida, was arrested and charged with Operating a Personal Care Home without a License, Exploitation-8 Counts, Abuse and Neglect of a Disabled Adult and Simple Battery.
Donald Randall, an Uplift volunteer, 56, of 7752 GA HWY 133, Morven, Georgia, was arrested for Exploitation-5 Counts, Abuse and Neglect of a Disabled Adult and Aggravated Assault.
Robert Klock, an Uplift volunteer, 28, of 7478 Chase Way, Hahira, Georgia, was arrested for Exploitation, Abuse and Neglect of a Disabled Adult, Aggravated Assault and Battery.
Wilbert Davis, an Uplift employee, 56, of 7752 GA HWY 133, Morven, Georgia, was arrested for Exploitation- 3 Counts, Abuse and Neglect of a Disabled Adult and Simple Battery.
Paul Graham, an Uplift resident, 53, of 7752 GA HWY 133, Morven, Georgia, was arrested forExploitation, Abuse or Neglect of a Disabled Adult and Aggravated Battery.
Denise Dermody, an Uplift resident, 63 of 7752 GA HWY 133, Morven, Georgia, was arrested for Exploitation and Abuse and Neglect of a Disabled Adult.
The actions by arrestees that led to these charges were carried out over the past 12 months. Also assisting with the operation was Georgia Department of Community Health-Division of HealthFacility Regulations, Benchmark Human Services, Adult Protective Services, South Georgia Ambulance, Southern Circuit District Attorney's Office and Brooks County Victim's Assistance.