Wadesboro police officers and children braved the cold Dec. 16 for the agency’s annual Shop with a Cop.
Twenty children met at the new Wadesboro police station on Rutherford Street after school ended. The children were then treated to lunch at a local restaurant before going to Walmart.
Each child was given a $250 gift card to spend on whatever they wanted for themselves or for their families. They were each teamed up with an officer and a Walmart employee, who went with them to keep a tally on their items’ cost. Along with the officers involved, several of the officers’ families came out to help with the kids.
Popular toys this year included bicycles, clothes, baby dolls, remote control cars and video games.
Angel Monee’ Robinson’s mom said that her daughter was able to get everything that she wanted thanks to this program. Her favorite items included a unicorn, boots and clothes. Angel’s absolute favorite was a Monster High toy.
Along with the gifts, Magistrate Josh Leviner set up hair cutting appointments for some of the kids who wanted one. Leviner also did a lot of work with the fundraising this year. He helped lead the Polar Bear 5K event, which raised about $6,500; most of this money went towards Shop with a Cop.
“It’s wonderful,” Mayor Bill Thacker said. “Just wonderful to see the interaction between these policemen, these kids and their parents.”
Alex Sewell, the town manager, echoed this statement by saying how this event is a great example of community policing.
“It’s not just about the kids getting gifts, but also about trust building in the community between the community and the police department,” Leviner said.
Tracey Brewer is a freelance correspondent for The Anson Record.