The Americus Police Department Celebrates its Annual Shop With A Cop Christmas Event

December 2019

Photo credit: Americus Police Department Detective Quintavious Sims pictured with Jasmine King and a recipient for the annual Shop with A Cop Christmas give-a-away.

By Chief Mark Scott

As we prepare to celebrate Christmas, I would like to thank everyone in this community who has been so generous to us at the police department this year. We just completed our third annual Shop with A Cop event this week and it was a great success. Thanks entirely to the generosity of businesses and individuals in this community we were able to sponsor thirty children to shop with us and increase the amount that we were able to give to each child. Thanks to everyone in the community who gave and thanks especially to the officers and staff from the Americus Police Department, GSW Police Department, and the District Attorney’s Office who came out to shop with the kids and gave of their time (and money) to make this event happen. Special thanks to Sumter County DFACS and SOWEGA CASA who helped us coordinate with the kids and their families. We all look forward to this event every year. As we were wrapping up the shopping one of our officers asked me if we can possibly double the number of kids we help next year. My reply, “We can probably raise the funds, but we don’t have enough officers and staff to pair with that many kids”. His response? “Let’s do two sessions then, because I could do this every day!” Good idea! Or maybe we can invite some of our brothers and sisters in brown and light blue uniforms to join us. At any rate, we are already taking donations for next year, so all of you civic clubs out there, please think of us when you put together your 2020 budget.

Of course, anytime you try to do something positive there will be a few trolls who jump on social media and start attacking. I can assure you that programs like Shop with A Cop, Santa Patrol, GREAT Summer Camp, mentoring youth at the YDC, reading to kids at the primary schools, grilling hotdogs in a park, Red Ribbon Week, etc. don’t take away from our law enforcement efforts. Neither do the hours of volunteer time that our officers and staff give back to the community as scout leaders, mentors, coaches, referees, and Bible study leaders. They are out there 24 hours a day answering when you call and proactively working our neighborhoods
to keep you safe. We can’t prevent every crime and we don’t always catch every bad guy, but we are definitely making a difference. Violent crime and property crime are both down from previous years and when we publish our end of year report next month we hope to be able to share some very good news about that.

Thank you again for your support. Thanks particularly to those of you who make a point of saying something encouraging when you see an officer out in public and particularly to those of you who send your kids over to thank officers for their service. That makes our day! I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous New Year!