Snow tracks lead to arrest of drug suspect

by Wes Mayer

On Friday, with a little help from the snow on the ground, drug investigators arrested a man suspected of distributing both marijuana and crack cocaine in Newnan.

After receiving multiple complaints about narcotics and alcohol being sold from a home on the 100-block of West Washington Street, investigators with the Newnan Police Department's Drug Unit served a search warrant at the home on Friday, said Sgt. Mark Cooper with the drug unit. During the search, the homeowner cooperated and provided the identity of a man who sold narcotics in the home, Vercardo T. Hodo, 31.

According to the homeowner, Hodo left the home on his bicycle right before authorities arrived, and assisting deputies with the Coweta County Sheriff's Office located and stopped him on West Washington Street, Cooper said. While talking to Hodo, a K-9 unit was called to the scene, and after some searching, authorities located a bag filled with narcotics hidden in the snow in the side yard of a nearby home.

According to Cooper, investigators were able to follow the tracks left in the snow and connect Hodo to the narcotics. Inside the plastic bag, investigators found 10 separate baggies containing suspected marijuana and 46 baggies of pre-packaged crack cocaine rocks, and Hodo was charged for the possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of cocaine with intent to distribute. Hodo also had $500 in cash in his possession.

A woman, Laquinta Shabre Jackson, 33, was also arrested at the residence during the search, Cooper said. Jackson was caught attempting to hide a baggie of suspected marijuana in between the cushions of a couch - the suspected marijuana in Jackson's baggie matched the baggies found in the snow, leading investigators to believe Hodo recently sold the marijuana to Jackson.

Jackson was taken into custody and charged with the possession of marijuana.

Both Hodo and Jackson were transported to the Coweta County Jail, but the owner of the home on West Washington Street was only given a warning for a disorderly house for cooperating in the investigation, Cooper said.

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