Florida cop’s actions bring family to tears
October 23, 2013
Nearly everyday we’re subjected to police corruption horror stories that try us to the very fabrics of our souls, so much so that a positive story – one in which an officer actually serves the public – is a welcomed sight.
Our latest hero cop tale takes us to Miami-Dade, Florida, where Officer Vicki Thomas was summoned to a local grocery store to deal with a shoplifter who had attempted to abscond with $300 worth of food.
It’s no stretch to say, for as much as Jessica Robles was trying to make off with, most officers wouldn’t have thought twice about locking her up to teach her a lesson.
But in a shocking demonstration of goodwill, Officer Thomas opted for a more humanitarian approach.
“She asked, ‘Do you even have food at the house?’” Robles told Miami’s Fox affiliate WSVN. “And I looked at her in her face, and I told her, ‘Not at all.’”
Robles, like many Americans, is having a rough time. No job, no money and three kids make it all the more difficult to keep the fridge stocked in an economy where food prices just keep going up.
Out of desperation, she headed to her neighborhood Publix store with a coupon for a five-finger discount, an illustration of what we may see others resort to when food stamp benefits are scaled back come November.
“I asked her, ‘Why would you do that? What would make you do that?’” Officer Thomas recalled. “She said, ‘My kids were hungry.’”
Officer Thomas said the moment she learned it was done in an earnest attempt to put food on the table, she had no problem springing for $100 worth of groceries.
“I made the decision to buy her some groceries, because arresting her wasn’t gonna solve the problem with her children being hungry,” Thomas reasoned. “So I went and bought her some groceries.”
Even though Officer Thomas still cited Robles, she resolved not to jail her as her record showed she wasn’t a habitual shoplifter, nor did she have any outstanding criminal violations.
“The only thing I asked of her was when she gets on her feet that she help someone else out, and she said she would,” Thomas said.
After citing Robles, Officer Thomas followed up the unprecedented display of compassion with a ride home. “I’m a full-service cop,” Thomas told ABC News.