Man found guilty of cocaine charge with enhanced penalty

A jury handed down a guilty verdict with an enhanced penalty for a man caught with cocaine near an elementary school, officials said.

A Jackson County jury on Wednesday found John Ellis Cole, 36, of Gautier, guilty of transfer of a controlled substance. The charge also carried an enhanced penalty since the transfer occurred within 1,500 feet of College Park Elementary School, according to the district attorney’s office.

Cole gave less than two grams of cocaine to a confidential informant, who was wearing an audio/video recording device on May 28, 2014, according to a press release from the DA’s Office. The South Mississippi Metro Enforcement Team investigated the case.

Judge Kathy Jackson set sentencing for Oct.14.

Justin Vicory: 228-896-2326, @justinvicory