Thin Blue Line Special: Havasu Police takes kids shopping for Christmas
Sixteen children shopped till they dropped at the Lake Havasu City Police Department’s fifth annual Shop with a Cop event.
Members of the Citizens Police Academy Alumni and Lake Havasu City Police Department volunteered Saturday morning to take 16 kids from the Lake Havasu Unified School District on a $150 shopping spree at Kmart. At 9 a.m., the kids met at the police department on McCulloch Blvd to eat breakfast with volunteer police officers who then drove them in their patrol cars to Kmart. Before taking off, the kids turned on the sirens and lights and shouted “Merry Christmas” through the intercom. The officers left the lights on their vehicles as they drove down McCulloch to the store.
According to Police Sergeant Chris Sautner, “The Citizens Police Academy Alumni visits every school in the district and asks the principals which two students need help during the holidays. We get information about the kids as well as their families, so we know details about who we are shopping for.”
President of the Citizens Police Academy Alumni, Susan Plourde said, “We want to include the kids’ families in this shopping trip so everyone is taken care of during the holidays.” Plourde and her team rely on the community and local businesses to raise funds for the program. “When we first started five years ago, we only had eight kids. Now we’re getting more donations from the community and our group of kids doubled in size. This morning we received a $1000 donation from Hair Productions, one of our biggest donations so far.”
Each kid was given $150 and free reign of whatever they wanted in the store; most spent their entire amount on gifts for their families and friends. After an hour and half of shopping, they returned to the police department to wrap the gifts and eat Little Caesars’ pizza. The kids were also given a $25 gift card to Smith’s and a stuffed animal.