BILLINGS — The first day of school is a couple of weeks away and 30 kids are ready with new haircuts, school supplies, and backpacks thanks to the inaugural Billings Police Department Shop With a Cop program, the back-to-school edition.
It was a dream come true for some kids Sunday as they hitched a ride with the Billings Police Department for a good cause.
Kids rode alongside officers in a procession from MetraPark to Scheels where they were able to pick out their own backpacks filled to the brim with school supplies.
“I got a whole bunch of school supplies. And I like them,” said Tahlia Hollman.
Though Shop With a Cop has been around for three years, thanks to donations from the community, the Billings Police Department was able to add the back-to-school event to the program.
“It warms your heart just seeing that. Our smiles are almost as big as theirs are right now so it’s just good to see kids in a good way where there out having a good time, having fun,” said Billing Police Sergeant Jeff Stovall.
Fun was an understatement as kids like Sage Russell are ready for their favorite parts of school.
“Playing at recess,” six-year-old Russell said.
Some even received haircuts and manicures from event sponsors. Jazmin Khatri had quite a few inches cut from her locks.
“Bigger than my hand, I can tell you that, so more than six inches,” Khatri said.
The back-to-school edition of Shop With a Cop is now a permanent fixture of the program. Sgt. Stovall hopes Billings Police Department can eventually connect with every school in the city.
“You have some of these kids that come from backgrounds where they may be financially struggling, or they’ve had a tragedy. They may have had a bad interaction with law enforcement, and we just want to change that. We want to bridge that gap in our community here,” Stovall said.
These kids won’t forget the time they shopped with a cop.
“All the cops are making the world a better place,” said seven-year-old Jaxsen Stovall.