An anti-cop sentiment has been making waves around the country for more than a year, and many people have stopped respecting our heroes in blue.
However, one man in Michigan changed his perception of police officers after his encounter with one ended a little differently than he expected.
LaVonte Dell was pulled over in Westland on April 18 of 2016 for an illegal tint on his windows, WXYZ-TV reported. However, the cop also noticed that the man’s 3-year-old daughter was in the back seat without a car seat. Instead of giving the father a hard time, the gracious cop decided to help him, instead.
“I asked him, ‘why is she back there without a car seat?” Officer Joshua Scaglione told the news station.
The cop told the father that it wasn’t safe for such a little girl to be riding in a regular seat, but he let the man explain.
“He teared up a little bit and told me he was going through some tough times,” Scaglione said.
When the cop asked Dell to step out of the vehicle, the father said he expected the worst. But, instead, he received something completely unexpected — a helping hand.
“I related to the fact that I’ve been in that situation before,” Scaglione explained. “I realized this was the perfect opportunity to help him.”
Instead of giving Dell a ticket, Scaglione told the father to follow him to a nearby Walmart, where he bought Dell a car seat for his daughter.
“You would have thought we were best friends,” Dell said. “No awkward silence. I learned about him. He learned about me.”
The cop thought the father seemed like a hardworking man who was trying his best to provide for his family, and he didn’t want to make things worse by simply issuing a ticket without offering any real assistance.
The two parted ways before Dell realized he didn’t know the officer’s name, so he posted about the encounter on Facebook in an attempt to track him down.
The Westland Police Community Partnership re-posted his message on just a few days later, and it has since gone viral, with more than 17,000 likes and over 7,000 shares.
“It was difficult to identify the officer responsible as he had not told anyone about what had happened,” the partnership’s post explained. “It is clear that his sole purpose was to assist the driver, not to receive recognition.”
“I feel like [Scaglione] should get the recognition,” Dell told WXYZ. “Everyone should know what he did.”
Dell concluded his Facebook post with an important lesson that we all learned as kids, but some of us have forgotten along the way: “Don’t judge a book by its cover. You’d be surprised what comes of it.”
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