ELKHART — An Elkhart man has been charged with two felonies for illegal firearm possession.

Xavier Cooper, 17, was arrested May 15 and charged with dangerous possession of a firearm by someone underage, with prior conviction, and carrying a handgun without a license with a previous conviction. Both are Level 5 felonies. 

Police say he was one of four men in a vehicle parked near Hawthorne Elementary School when he was arrested. 

Cooper was booked in the Elkhart County Correctional Facility on $50,000 bond. His initial court hearing was held May 17.

According to court documents:

An Elkhart Police officer was investigating a report about a vehicle in the elementary school parking lot around 8:15 p.m. According to the person who made the report, there were three or four men in the vehicle who appeared to be smoking marijuana.

The officer arrived and noticed that there were children playing near the playground just south of where the vehicle was parked.

The officer recognized Cooper on sight while approaching the vehicle. The patrolman could also smell burnt marijuana in the vehicle and found traces of the drug inside.

A 9mm handgun was also found tucked under the front passenger seat, directly in front of where Cooper had been sitting. The gun had a magazine with eight rounds in it.

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