Sisters Veola Thomas (right) and Gwendolyn Thomas got to go shopping for presents for a total of five children age 2–11 through the Alexander City Police Department’s Shop with a Cop program. | Alison James

Archived Story

Shop with a cop

Published 12:00pm Saturday, December 22, 2012

ACPD gives families opportunity to purchase presents

Nine families in Alexander City received a special gift this year for Christmas – the opportunity to Shop With A Cop.

The Alexander City Police Department implemented the program for the first time this year, although Sgt. James Orr said it has been a long-standing program in other cities.

“It’s just a great thing to do for the kids,” Orr said.

The police department treated nine families to  Christmas shopping trips to purchase gifts for the children. Fifteen children in all, from ages 1 to 15, benefited from the program this year.

“We’re hoping to do it every year,” said Capt. Tom Lovett.

Orr said he wanted to thank everyone who helped make the program possible, including Radio Shack, Wal-mart, Steele’s, Roses, Hibbett Sports, Mayor Charles Shaw and Lynn Patterson, as well as all the officers who participated.

“All of us gave, and that’s what made it special for the kids,” Orr said.

Each family was told a dollar amount they could spend and were then able to go through and to choose what they wanted to give their children.

“It’s a blessing because we couldn’t do it ourselves,” said Gwendolyn Thomas, who picked up – among other things – coloring books, wrestling toys, Dora items and a nightlight for her grandchildren.