COFFEE WITH A COP – The Michigan State Police (MSP) organized Coffee With a Cop, which was held Sunday, Feb. 21 at Fosters Coffee in Owosso. In addition to MSP, representatives from the Shiawassee County Sheriff Department (SCSD), Corunna Police Department, Owosso Police Department and the Owosso Fire Department also participated in the community outreach event.
MSP Trooper Amy Belanger, the lead organizer, said the purpose of the event was to “bring law enforcement and the community together,” while also helping out a community business. The event targeted the children of the area in an effort to make officers more approachable for the next generation.
“A lot of children are intimidated by the uniform,” Belanger explained. “We want to build trust with the children of the community so that they can feel safe coming to us for anything, good or bad. We want to bridge the gap between the community and law enforcement. This is a great way for us to get to know the people we are serving and to show that we are approachable and here to help.”
Coffee With a Cop is part of the recent effort by local law enforcement agencies to reach out to the community. The collaborative group also held Cones With a Cop, Shop With a Hero, and Stuff a Blue Goose in 2015, with plans to make each an annual Shiawassee County tradition.
Shown here are (from left): MSP Trooper Amy Belanger, Owosso officer Michael Olsey, Fosters co-owner John Moore, MSP Trooper Steve Kramer, SCSD Sergeant Brian BeGole, Corunna Police Chief Nick Chiros, Fosters co-owner Nicholas Pidek, Owosso Fire Chief Arthur Hart, Owosso firefighter John McKay, Owosso Public Safety Director Kevin Lenkart, and MSP Lieutenant Paul Pummill. (Independent Photo/Graham Sturgeon)