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Former officer pleads guilty to marijuana trafficking

April 12, 2018--10:13 a.m.

Staff reports

A former Rome Police Officer will be sentenced next week after entering an open plea Wednesday to charges of trafficking marijuana, bribery, and violation of oath of office.

According to previous reports, 40-year old Earnest Edward Cox, a 15-year veteran of the department, provided sensitive, law enforcement information Tyson Brown at a location on King Bee Circle between 2 and 3 p.m. on March 8 of 2017.

Tyson Brown and Maverick Brown were arrested that same day for selling marijuana, according to previous jail records.

According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Cox was arrested March 12 following a six-month investigation by the GBI’s Calhoun Office and the GBI’s West Metro Regional Drug Enforcement Office.

The Rome Police Department contacted the GBI in October 2016 after receiving information about alleged corruption.

Rome Police Chief Denise Downer-McKinney requested the GBI to conduct a criminal investigation into the allegations of police corruption against Officer Cox.

An “open” plea is when the defendant pleads guilty without any sentencing assurances.