Getting pulled over by the police can be one of the most terrifying and day-ruining experiences, but the Lowell Police transformed a few traffic stops into the perfect opportunity to offer up some Christmas cheer. Instead of issuing traffic tickets, they helped warm hearts.
Officer Scot VanSolkema pulled over drivers for minor traffic offenses. Instead of issuing tickets, they questioned the drivers about what they wanted for Christmas. Unbeknownst to the traffic offender, a team at the nearby Meijer was listening by way of radio, so they could quickly buy the gifts, wrap them and have it delivered. All in the time it takes to issue a ticket.
Officer VanSolkema then presented the drivers with a wrapped present and their reactions were priceless. Many were in disbelief, there was laughter, gratitude, and even tears. Lowell Police Chief Steve Bukala says in the video, “most of the contact the police officers have with the general public is on a traffic stop, and you can find a lot out about that person in that 10 to 15 minute window, whether they’re having a good day, a bad day, or a horrible day. And then we got this idea: what if we could change that person’s day in real time? What if we could change that person’s day right now?”
And change they did!
Chief Bukala told the local news that officers pulled over 50 drivers and handed out about 30 presents. The most expensive was a laptop computer and a Xbox gaming system, and the most modest was a curling iron.
We often have a negative attitude of police officers because of the recent current events, but here we see how powerful their impact can be in the community.
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