Charlotte, N.C . Officers replace drugs with Green Eggs and Ham!

The Woodstone Apartments located in Charlotte, N.C. was once a place inhabited by drug dealers and some oft he dregs of the area. Children who resided there learned quickly to avoid or fear the Police because of the negative impact they saw when Officers arrived.

But that has all changed. Officers there now are taking a more active role with the community after cleaning up the drug problem and are greeted warmly by the kids and residents. Everyone has benefited in the community from these efforts.

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Orlando, Fl. Officer Greg Smith ” it happens every day.”

Orlando, Fl. Police are under scrutiny for current events as are many Departments across our nation. However the simple acts of kindness very often go unnoticed. It takes a citizen like Clyde King of Orlando to write a letter to the Orlando Sentinel to get any attention at all.

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Ansonia,Ct. Officer Michael Castillo fixing problems.

July 27, 2015 Ansonia, Ct. Police Officer Michael Castillo responded to a fight in progress call outside the local target Store. Upon his arrival he found a group of kids, not fighting but rather having other problems. After a brief discussion that was witnessed by Faith Bisson Taylor Officer Castillo set about the task of taking corrective measures.

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Officer Charlie Casserly Creating Community “Ties”

All Officers can take a page from the veteran Officer Charlie Casserly of New Jersey who had two choices. He could stay in his car or he could take 30 minutes and make a difference with a young man that may leave a lifetime of impact.

All Officers can take a page from the veteran Officer Charlie Casserly of New Jersey who had two choices. He could stay in his car or he could take 30 minutes and make a difference with a young man that may leave a lifetime of impact.

“Lashambi B. Moore shared a photo of Officer Charlie Casserly on Martin Luther King Drive with a local teen, wearing khakis a button-down shirt and sweater vest. The teen did not know how to tie his tie and asked Casserly for help.” The reported.

“Charlie pulled the patrol car over, got out and spent nearly a half an hour teaching the young man how to tie a tie,” Moore wrote on Facebook. The photo was taken on July 9, just before 10 a.m.

“I only posted it to make others feel good because it made me feel good,” Moore said.

Officer Charlie Casserly

Image Credit: Screenshot

The young man did not know how to tie his tie properly and asked the officer for some help. Casserly who has been on the job for 36 years and is preparing for retirement obliged and helped the young man learn to tie his tie.

It may not sound like much to do but it is a big to do for a few reasons. It certainly is not in any officers job description to tie peoples ties, but in his willingness to just be helpful Casserly is an example for Law Enforcement Officers everywhere.

The young man was also smart enough to ask the right person for help. I doubt that many people would stop on the street to help someone that they don’t know tie their tie for 30 minutes. But during that time we can only imagine that some connection was made between the two people.

The senior Police Officer and young man shared an experience that can be remembered every time the young adult ties his tie for the rest of his life. It can be remembered as a very positive experience of sharing some basic information and social skills that were perhaps second nature to some but in need of by others.

While some other officers may not have been so amiable in assisting him, Casserly did.

If you have served in any community of professionals be it Law Enforcement, Medical, Technology, Media or any other especially ones that serve the public. You always run into people who will tell others “that’s not my job” and go on their way doing only what they need to do. Yet in Law Enforcement many Officers see interaction with the community such as this as just part of their lives, not their jobs.

It would be nice to see more attention given to these acts of kindness where Officers are acting as part of the community rather than how they have been portrayed as villains constantly at odds with the community. Normally the only time White officers are portrayed with Black youths is when something horrible happens.

Why isn’t something like this spread across the news stations and social media as much as other stories that are not even true in retrospect? Perhaps because it is simply not news at all. It happens everyday across our Country and by definition is not ‘news worthy’.

Out of the thousands of officers I have known and worked with, I literally only know a handful that have not performed some act of kindness to strangers because they believe they are part of the community and are just trying to make it better.

So to the officers who read this, what can you do today to help your community? Coach a softball team? Buy a small group of kids an ice cream on a hot day and share a few moments with them? Sit on a bench with an elderly person who is alone just to be there to talk to them while you are walking your beat? Stop into the businesses in your patrol sector and introduce yourself to the staff just to ask how their day is going?

Will you follow the example of Officer Casserly and take 30 minutes out of your day when you can to help a young man tie his tie just because it is the community you are part of?

Officer Casserly, enjoy your retirement and thank you for helping to create positive “ties” with the community.

Some things never go viral

Jacksonville Sheriffs Officer helps a child with his bicycle

Everyday Police officers and Deputy Sheriff’s across our nation make connections with the communities that they serve quietly, without any attention. They do it because they want to not because it is in their job description. They do it because helping people is what they want to do not but because someone is looking or or for notoriety.

Jacksonville Sheriffs Officer
Credit unknown: Jacksonville Sheriffs Officer

They are people trying to serve and protect their communities under difficult circumstances and it seems that the only time they get any attention is when something goes wrong. Then it is “news worthy” and all officers are judged by that event.

The events that should be noted are like this one where a Jacksonville Sheriffs Deputy helps a child fix his bicycle. Why won’t these acts of kindness where Officers reach out to the community ever go viral yet incidents that never really happened can spark entire movements of outrage and division?

If a movement is to take place, let it be one of cooperation, understanding and trust built upon small acts of kindness that happen everywhere yet have gone without notice. Spread the word!