The four suspects recently arrested in the Long County double homicide of Tiffany York and Michael Roark also are being investigated for their alleged involvement in weapons trafficking, according to information provided by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Pvt. Christopher Salmon and Sgt. Anthony Peden both face malice murder charges, and Pvt. Isaac Aguigui and Pfc. Michael Burnett both have been charged with being a party to murder. The suspects currently are being held without bond at the Liberty County Regional Jail.
Atlanta Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives public information officer Richard Coes said the double homicide investigation caught the bureau’s attention, prompting the ATF to get involved.
The ATF obtained a warrant and conducted a search Tuesday morning at a house in Hinesville’s Griffin Park subdivision. Coes said a cache of weapons was found inside a house on Cordele Street.
“Agents recovered 13 … firearms from the home,” Coes said. He could not provide information on how agents zeroed in on the residence. He would not elaborate on the investigation but did say that the ATF has reason to believe the men might have been purchasing large amounts of weapons and possibly distributing them.
Coe said that law-enforcement officials may have found a connection between the shootings of York and Roark with the soldiers and the firearms trafficking.
“There are indications that all three are connected,” he said.
He would not comment on whether explosives were found at the Cordele Street residence. If charges are handed down in the weapons case, they would be filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta.
Coes said a federal firearms license is required to sell firearms.
“These individuals are suspected of selling the firearms out of state or to individuals,” he said.