A Jasper County resident was sentenced to 27 years in prison Wednesday after he was convicted for a fourth drug offense in six years, according to the 14th Judicial Circuit Solicitor's Office.
Phillip Monroe, 35, who had been living in the Mitchellville community of Jasper County but is from Georgia, was found guilty of trafficking cocaine and possession of a controlled substance during a two-day trial.
Monroe was arrested in April when Ridgeland police officers pulled him over on Logan Street. According to testimony, Monroe threw a bag containing 28 grams of cocaine, a large quantity of pills and a small amount of marijuana onto a passenger's lap and threatened to kill his family if he did not claim ownership of the drugs, according to a news release.
The passenger, who had no prior record, later told police what had happened. Monroe eventually admitted the drugs were his and that he had planned to cook the powder cocaine to make crack, the release said.
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Jurors took 30 minutes to convict Monroe, who had convictions dating to 1997, for charges that include seven drug offenses, robbery, battery, cruelty to children, obstruction of justice and criminal damage to property, according to the release.
Because of Monroe's past convictions -- all occurring in the Savannah area -- he faced a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years. Carra Henderson was the prosecutor, and Judge Perry M. Buckner delivered the sentence.