Area kids shop with a cop - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Crystal Oko

Area kids shop with a cop

ROCHESTER, MN (FOX 47) -- We saw another side to law enforcement Saturday in Rochester, as they gathered their shopping carts and flew through the aisles of one local store, with a little one toting along.

At Wal-Mart North in Rochester, 45 young Rochester residents got the shopping spree of a lifetime.

It's a sound that's all too familiar on a Saturday afternoon, but a sight that's not so familiar.

This is Shop with a Cop's fourth year. It's a program that pairs up Rochester kids with a law enforcement officer, gives them 120 donated dollars and sends them into Wal-Mart, all on the hunt for holiday gifts.

Tim Griffin, with Wal-Mart, says, "We feel there's a real need in Rochester for this. It's something Wal-Mart has the ability to do. And it's something real fun for everybody to get involved."

Chol Angok says, "I bought my little sister a teddy bear."

9-year-old Chol Angok has a long list of family to buy for. Angok says, "My mom, my grandma, my older sister Victoria."

But it took Chol only an hour to spend his money. He got gifts for everyone including himself.

Sylvia Quirk, with the Rochester Police Department, says, "He got everybody on his list taken care of and he got everyone taken care of before he got his own. He did great."

Officers say it's a program that not only benefits kids - but the officers themselves.

Ryan Manguson, with the Rochester Police Department, says, "Kids that maybe haven't had the best Christmas, with little assistance. Or kids that are kind of on the fence and could use a little positive reinforcement. And this gives the kids and opportunity to have positive contact with law enforcement instead of negative."

Sylvia Quirk says, "I like dealing with the kids in a situation that's not confrontational."

Besides shopping, the kids got a free lunch and a tour inside some law enforcement vehicles.

Powered by Frankly