AP NEWS

Law enforcement spreads cheer at annual Shop with a Cop

December 3, 2017 GMT

BULLHEAD CITY — Jordyn Hamby is quite the bargain hunter.

She left the Bullhead City Walmart store Saturday morning with leggings, two shirts, two pairs of shoes, a toy puppy, a water bottle, a necklace, a puppy purse, an Elf on the Shelf toy and “a surprise Christmas gift for someone.”

All for about $100.

Jordyn was among 107 local children selected for Shop with a Cop, a day to meet and hang out with local first responders, ride in patrol vehicles and bring home new toys.

Ethan Glover, 9, said he feels like the best Christmas ever is coming.

His cart contained a radio-controlled Fast & Furious Navistar MXT Vehicle and a Spider-Man drift bike.

He said that the day, which included coffee, milk and doughnuts at the Bullhead City Elks Lodge and a lights-and-sirens ride to the store, was “awesome — really, really cool.”

While many of the children certainly enjoyed the shopping trip, so did their companions, who represented the Bullhead City Police Department, the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office, the local 911 dispatch center, the Bullhead City Fire Department and others.

Among those was BHCPD Officer Chase Hancock, who was coming off a night shift, and had been up since 7 p.m. Friday.

Hancock said giving up his rest was worth it.

“It’s a great opportunity to meet the kids and spread some holiday cheer,” he said.

The effort involved great travels for some helpers; Alfonso Zamudio baked cupcakes for the children and drove down from Flagstaff to deliver them.

Erin Davis, wife of Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Cliff Davis, flew down from Alaska, where the couple’s daughter attends high school, to participate.

“I came to support my husband and the community,” Erin Davis said.

The children, in grades K-5 at Bullhead City, Mohave Valley, Fort Mohave and Topock public and charter schools, chose their gifts, then each received a backpack filled with treats, art supplies, a baseball cap a chapter book and dental hygiene Supplies.

Each child also could choose a sports ball of his or her choice, and all met Santa Claus.

Lorrie Duggins, the BHCPD’s community services officer, serves as a spokesperson for the Shop with a Cop nonprofit.

She said the program is part of the great relationship between the police department and the community.

“The officers get to see the looks on the children’s faces (that reflect) what true heroes they are,” Duggins said.

Walmart put more employees on duty to accommodate the kids, she said, and set up various areas for the event. The store also provided a breakfast reception for parents while the children shopped.

Ethan’s mom, Misty Glover, said that being exposed to generosity and having positive interactions with first responders will have a lasting impact on the kids.

“Our community is great,” she said.

Volunteers helping with Santa visits, present wrapping and other tasks included Air Force JROTC cadets from Mohave High School, Mohave Accelerated Learning Center Key Club members and the River Valley High girls soccer team.