The residents of Nampa have been enjoying some pretty good spring weather according to the official release: “On March 21, 2016 at 6:43 P.M. Nampa Police Officers were dispatched to a complaint about kids playing baseball in their yard. The caller felt they were being too noisy and were afraid they would damage something with the balls and bats. When Officers arrived and saw what they were dealing with, they called for back up.. and moved their game to the park.”
Officers involved were: Sgt. Jamie Burns, Officer Ryan Beason, Officer Garret Salladay, Officer Michael Flores, Officer Aaron Coleman, Officer Jeremy Miller and dispatchers Diana, Sarah, Kim and Carmen.
The Officers understood that kids need to be kids and that Officers showing up and just removing them from healthy activities does nothing but push them toward less productive deeds. In fact the Officers turned the event around 100% making it very positive as an enjoyable and memorable day for the kids.
Sgt. Tim Riha of the Nampa Police Department told the Idaho Press-Tribune recalled the complaint after seeing what was actually happening and stated: “So dispatch rounded some officers together to take the children to a nearby park. Then they started a pick-up game.”
The video got a phenomenal amount of views including one person named Bobby White who is also known as “The Basketball Cop” who decided that something a bit more permanent needed to be done for the situation.
Officer Bobby White had been called to similar situation himself on January 15 as the WBL reported “Gainesville, Fla. Police Officer Bobby White responds to kids playing basketball too loud on the street” and responded in the same fashion as the officers did in Nampa. Taking the opportunity to bond with the kids rather than appear to be their oppressors.
So Bobby White sent a present to the kids of the Karcher Mobile Home Park. He provided them with a new basketball hoop through the nonprofit charity that he has established known as the BasketballCop Foundation.
Officer White hopes to continue to raise funds to donate basketball hoops to all 50 States so that results like Nampa can be realized. But what exactly happened in Nampa?
Well to start off, the kids were excited to see a truck pull up with the basketball hoop in it and as it was placed down and media started showing up along with about 20 officers in tow, kids started following suit. The children’s natural curiosity getting the better of them and wanting to see what all the commotion was about in their neighborhood.
Then the kids were invited by the officers to help set up the basketball hoop and talked to about safety issues of playing when cars came along. How it was more important to wait a few seconds to take a shot than having an accident. After that it was game on for about 50 kids and 20 officers who had a blast.
The enjoyment that they had was visible to everyone who was there.
The Idaho Press-Tribune was there and covered the event and spoke with people in attendance who stated:
Nampa Police Chief Joe Huff said: “This lets kids see police as approachable,” Huff said. “Seeing this group speaks volumes about this community.” “It’s a nice break,”
Sgt. Tim Riha said. “Usually we see the worst of the community, but today we get to see the best.”
Adriana Hernandez, whose son Eduardo played basketball Wednesday, said having the police donate to her neighborhood was amazing. “It’s really good,” Hernandez said. “Sometimes the children are not confident when it comes to the police and are not confident themselves. This makes them feel more comfortable and less scared.”
Nampa City Council member Sandi Levi also attended. She said watching the children have a chance to interact with police and have something new to enjoy was a reflection of the city. “I’m excited about this,” Levi said. “The police are showing a sense of community and building morale. When I see what they have done out here, you just have to see it for yourself. It’s really amazing.”
The WBL had a brief chat with Bobby White today who stated So far, He has sent Texas and Idaho basketball hoops that have been presented. He has also shipped to Massachusetts, Idaho, Texas, Florida, California, Arizona and New York. He was busy shipping yet another to Georgia this very day. Some of the basketball hoops have yet to be presented in their areas so the kids have something to look forward to as do the Officers in their communities.
#HoopsAcrossAmerica initiative is just a small side initiative to the foundation to get at least one hoop to a police department in each of the 50 states to find out more you can go to Facebook or Twitter.