A message was delivered on Thursday, March 16, 2023 directly to those living at an address that was the site of a search warrant on Alderville First Nation – leave.
Alderville First Nation Chief Dave Mowat along with council members, community members, and police walked up the long snow covered driveway to the home of George Hill shortly before 7 p.m. to deliver a message.
Mowat handed George Hill a Band Council Resolution that calls for Hill and those occupying the residence to “vacate the reserve.”
“We’re taking our community back – and we’re not allowing this to happen,” Mowat told Hill.
The residence was the site of a search warrant dealing with the investigation of a shooting on March 7, 2023 where a shooting victim was dropped off at Northumberland Hills Hospital in Cobourg in critical condition (which has since been upgraded to stable condition).
The search warrant at Hill’s residence had members of the Criminal Investigations Bureau assisted by local Crime Unit members, Emergency Response Team, Tactical Rescue Unit, OPP Canine Unit and others.
There has been no update from Northumberland OPP regarding the search warrant and no indication that anyone was arrested.
Hill asked Mowat when the eviction was to take place?
“You can leave now, if you want,” said Mowat.
Hill said he wouldn’t be able to leave right away, but did tell Mowat, “I understand where you’re coming from.”
Hill did ask Mowat what would be done with the home.
“We’ll deal with that after we collect ourselves. We’re taking over. We’re shutting these operations down. We’re going to work with our OPP partners and we’re not putting up with this..”
Hill said he did have one tenant residing at the residence.
“I’ve already kicked out the problem. I’ve seen what was happening here, so I kicked out my nephew and sister – they’re long, long gone.”
Hill told the group it would be a few days before he could leave, but a councillor told him, “24-hours is what we’d like.”
Hill spoke to Today’s Northumberland in a exclusive interview talking about the shooting stating he is a “victim” as well.
“Somebody showed up here (on March 7, 2023) that was injured and I know them through another person. They asked if I could take them to the hospital.”
Hill said he would, but stated he didn’t want to be involved with what was happening.
He got his friends girlfriend to take drive the shooting victim down to Northumberland Hills Hospital.
“We didn’t stick around or nothing like that.”
A few days after, “police were coming in here and they invaded the home.”
“Apparently the gentleman was involved in a gang related incident. It just so happens I was a victim of the same circumstances – and this is where we stand now.”
Hill said the victim, “had some people with him. They threatened me, they threatened everybody.”
The people that made the threats left shortly after and that’s when Hill and the others took the victim to the hospital in Cobourg.
The victim was conscious, but Hill said, “he looked beat-up pretty bad.”
Hill said he is from Alderville First Nation along with his grandfather.
Hill was living out west, but when he came back he met the love of his life – a woman named Cathy. The two bought the house on Shearer Point Road.
Hill said he is indigenous, but doesn’t have his status card.
“I used to be a pillar of this community. Everyone that knows me, knows that I’m not an evil person.”
Walking up to the residence there are numerous cameras and the house is blocked by a wooden fence with numerous no trespassing signs at the entrance. Approaching the house there are more security cameras.
Hill says the couple grow marijuana, but they also like their privacy.
One of the signs says, “Warning – If You Are Found Here Tonight – You Will Be Found Here Tomorrow” with an image two handguns on the sign.
Hill said it was a sign that someone gave to Cathy and him as a joke.
“We thought it was cute so we put it up.”
Cathy recently passed away in June 2022 and Hill said things have been going down hill since.
“It’s been one thing after another every since. It’s almost like the universe is against me.”
At the bottom of the hill, members of community placed a large sign in front of Hill’s driveway that stated, “Access Denied by Order of Chief & Council. Illegal Drug Activity and Violent Crime Will Not Be Tolerated – Alderville First Nation.”
Mowat also spoke to those in attendance.
“Let me be very clear. The individual at this address is not an Alderville band member. We have executed a Band Council Resolution and ordered him to leave the community.”
“This is a matter on the one hand of a serious level of dangerous trespass.”
Even though the search warrant was completed and the surrounding area safe, Mowat said, “that does not however, deal with the nature of the trespass on (the) reserve and why it can happen and continues to happen and why enforcement against it is such a challenge. There in lies a serious problem for First Nations leaders aiming to keep our communities safe.”
“But now that is has involved guns, we are not being silent anymore.”
“The point is that trespass on to our First Nations lands has always existed in one way or another.”
“As a First Nation with a history that goes back centuries in this region, it is no laughing matter that here we are today to take back our community on our own terms from outside encroachment. Here we stand today to say in no uncertain terms to the trespassers, leave! We will engage the Ontario Provincial Police to assist us in that when necessary and required. We will engage our federal partners at the Departments of Public Safety as well as Indigenous-Crown Relations to move our community policing efforts progressively forward. We will continue to engage at the provincial level through the Ontario Ministry of the Solicitor-General, in building on our community policing efforts. We will continue to employ the offices of the Chiefs of Ontario in this same task. And all the while we assert our inherent right to assure that the safety of our communities is kept at the highest standard and that our people can live here peacefully and without fear. One way or the other we will not allow our community to be a victim.”
“We assert that in the name of Alderville First Nation and of the Mishi saagig of the Anishinabeg.”
Shortly after Mowat spoke, three women from Alderville sang a song about strong women.