Caroline Op­ti­mist Club hosts Shop with a Cop

Times-Record - - Front Page - By DUSTIN HOLT dholt@ches­pub.com

DEN­TON — Lo­cal law en­force­ment agen­cies spent Satur­day, Dec. 17, Christ­mas shop­ping with Caroline County chil­dren at the Den­ton Wal­mart as part of the fifth an­nual Shop with a Cop pro­gram, hosted by the Caroline County Op­ti­mist Club.

Thirty chil­dren were paired with po­lice of­fi­cers from Den­ton po­lice, Fed­er­als­burg po­lice, Ridgely po­lice, Mary­land State Po­lice and the Caroline County Sher­iff’s Of­fice. The of­fi­cers

took each child around Wal­mart to do Christ­mas shop­ping.

The chil­dren se­lected pre­sents for them­selves and fam­ily mem­bers as part of the pro­gram.

The Caroline County Op­ti­mist Club raised the money with help from busi­nesses and lo­cal or­ga­ni­za­tions, in­clud­ing Wal­mart, Pizza Em­pire, Den­ton Fire Com­pany, Fol­ger Nolan Flem­ing Dou­glas, Amer­i­can Le­gion Post 29, Ch­e­sa­peake Hy­dro-Wash, Towers Con­crete, Den­ton Lions Club, Dave Davis, Ridgely Lions Club, Chop­tank Elec­tric Trust, R&M Per­for­mance, WINX Ra­dio Sta­tion, Den­ton Church of the Nazarene, Chop­tank River Yacht Club, Mr. and Mrs. Mar­grey, Ridgely Car Show, and Bruce and Bar­bara Collins.

“We ap­pre­ci­ate all the civic or­ga­ni­za­tions that sup­port Shop with a Cop and the Caroline County Op­ti­mist Club,” said Caroline County State’s At­tor­ney and Caroline Op­ti­mist Club mem­ber Joseph Ri­ley. “We’ve had very gen­er­ous do­na­tions through our spon­sors.

“The Op­ti­mist Club is to­tally ded­i­cated to chil­dren. We have a spe­cial op­por­tu­nity to take some kids, who maybe this Christ­mas sea­son will be a lit­tle rougher than oth­ers, and go out with lo­cal law en­force­ment to pick out Christ­mas pre­sents.

“This also gives the chil­dren an op­por­tu­nity to have a pos­i­tive ex­pe­ri­ence with law en­force­ment of­fi­cers. This year, more than any other year I can re­mem­ber, we re­ally need to have that op­por­tu­nity to show the com­mu­nity, the chil­dren, the next gen­er­a­tion that a law en­force­ment of­fi­cer is some­thing more than some­one who ar­rests peo­ple. They are out there pro­tect­ing and serv­ing the com­mu­nity, and we ap­pre­ci­ate all they do for us.”

Caroline County Sher­iff Randy Bounds par­tic­i­pated in the event and said Shop with a Cop is spe­cial be­cause all the law en­force­ment agen­cies get to work to­gether for a great cause.

“It is a great time to get to­gether for an out­side event with all of the other law en­force­ment agen­cies,” Bounds said. “We work with them each day, and they all do such a great job. We are just proud to serve the Caroline County com­mu­nity to­gether.

“We have a great group of men and women who serve the com­mu­nity in the dif­fer­ent agen­cies. They en­joy com­ing out here with the chil­dren and help add some joy to the hol­i­days. The Caroline County Op­ti­mist Club puts on an outstanding event for the chil­dren. We are proud to be a part of this outstanding cause.

“My fa­vorite part is be­ing able to in­ter­act with the chil­dren. It is a great chance to con­nect on a per­sonal level. See­ing the amount of law en­force­ment out here to­day re­ally makes me proud to be a mem­ber of Caroline County and serve the com­mu­nity.”

Af­ter of­fi­cers and chil­dren com­pleted their Christ­mas shop­ping, the chil­dren got to ride with the po­lice of­fi­cers to the Chop­tank River Yacht Club in Den­ton to wrap the pre­sents and en­joy a pizza party cour­tesy of Pizza Em­pire.

“This is why this event is so im­por­tant, be­cause of the one-on-one in­ter­ac­tion be­tween the of­fi­cers and chil­dren,” Ri­ley said. “It is a spe­cial op­por­tu­nity for the law en­force­ment agen­cies as well. I get a lot of law en­force­ment of­fi­cers that tell me how much they en­joy do­ing this out­reach be­cause they get to see peo­ple with smiles on their faces.” Fol­low Caroline/Dorch­ester Edi­tor Dustin Holt on Twit­ter @Dustin_S­tarDem.

PHO­TOS BY DUSTIN HOLT

Fed­er­als­burg po­lice of­fi­cer Jeff Adams helps wrap a Christ­mas present with a child dur­ing the fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event in Den­ton Satur­day, Dec. 17.

Caroline County Sher­iff deputy Am­ber Thamert helps pick out a toy for a young­ster dur­ing the fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event at the Den­ton Wal­mart Satur­day, Dec. 17.

PHO­TOS BY DUSTIN HOLT

Caroline County Op­ti­mist Club re­ceived do­na­tions from many lo­cal busi­nesses, or­ga­ni­za­tions and com­mu­nity mem­bers for the 2016 Shop With a Cop Pro­gram.

Mary­land State Trooper Daniel Til­gh­man, left, and Fed­er­als­burg po­lice of­fi­cer David Hub­bard help wrap Christ­mas pre­sents dur­ing the fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event in Den­ton Satur­day, Dec. 17.

Lo­cal law en­force­ment of­fi­cers help pick out toys for Caroline County chil­dren dur­ing the fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event at the Den­ton Wal­mart Satur­day, Dec. 17.

Mary­land State Trooper Daniel Til­gh­man gives a young­ster a ride in the Den­ton Wal­mart toy aisle dur­ing fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event Satur­day, Dec. 17.

Caroline County Sher­iff deputy Ben Allen helps wrap a Christ­mas present with a child dur­ing the fifth an­nual Caroline Op­ti­mist Club Shop with a Cop event in Den­ton Satur­day, Dec. 17.

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