Wyandotte Police Department’s ‘Shop with a Cop’ doubles in size from last year

Area agencies volunteer to help

11-year old Hailey scoured the aisles of Walmart, with the help of a police officer, picking out toys and clothes for her siblings

“Minecraft, maybe a little of Pokemon and just since that’s what is on his list.”

It’s her first time being a part of the Wyandotte Tribal Police Department’s annual ‘Shop with a Cop’ program.

“It’s actually like really fun, I’ve never had anything like this back in Commerce.”

With Christmas around the corner, some families are struggling to put gifts under the tree. The program pairs underprivileged children with officers and volunteers.

Through donations, kids are provided with money to shop for Christmas presents. This year each kid was given $75.

“We don’t know what their story is at home, this may be the highlight of their year, and we try to make it the best highlight we can” said Wyandotte Police Chief, Glenn Johnston.

This year the program served 47 kids in total, with the help of 45 volunteers. It has more than doubled since last year in the amount of kids helped. According to Chief Johnston, the program, last year, had around 24 kids.

Officers from Ottawa County, Commerce, a park ranger, and Quapaw Marshalls all helped. It’s the first time all of these agencies teamed up for the event.

“We all play the same game, but we just wear different uniforms, and we’re all coming together now” added Chief Johnston.

The program helps create a bond between the children and law enforcement.

“That friendship is starting to happen and it works and those same kids as they’re getting older, we never hear a word out of them, never have a problem with them at all” added Chief Johnston.

The kids filled their carts to the top, and for them, Christmas just got a little more merry.

“They’re out here nothing but smiles and this will be talked about through July of next year, and then we’ll get started again” said Chief Johnston.
For Hailey, she says it is something she wants to do again.

“It was really fun shopping for them.”

Wyandotte Nation Police Department hopes to increase the number of kids they can help next year.

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