Twenty sheriff’s deputies and police officers from the Big Horn Basin joined forces to make the Christmas holiday shine a little brighter for children from their area with their participation in the “Shop
with a Cop” event at the Cody Walmart. Officers were paired with children selected by their respective school jurisdictions. Deputy Darrold Newman of the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Department and Lovell Police Department Sgt. Roger Haney were among those participating.
On Dec. 11, Haney picked up Dustin Moore, 7, and his sister Emily, 10, taking them to the Cody Walmart for a $109 shopping spree. On arrival, each child was assigned to his or her own personal shopping associate from the Walmart staff, who helped them navigate the store. The children had the option of either buying gifts for themselves or for others.
The children’s father, Jesse Moore, said the children chose to purchase gifts for each other and for him. He said the Walmart staff also gave them gifts during their visit to the store. He said the children attended a pizza party afterward at the Park County Sheriff’s Office, where deputies and officers helped them wrap gifts.
Moore said he thought the program was “awesome” and hopes it will continue.
“I think this sort of thing really helps children develop a positive outlook about law enforcement,” said Moore.
The “Shop with a Cop” program is fueled by donations from Walmart and private donors in order to provide the fun-filled shopping experience for children in need. It is a nationwide program. According to Lovell Police Chief Dan Laffin, the idea is to create a positive relationship between the child and law enforcement that hopefully will last throughout their lives.
Officers from the Wyoming Highway Patrol, Park County Sheriff, Big Horn County Sheriff, Cody Police, Powell Police, and Lovell Police departments participated in the event. It was organized by a trooper from the Wyoming Highway Patrol.
By Patti Carpenter