Opa-Locka , Fla. – Law enforcement officers donated their hearts and time to 12 pre-selected students from local schools when the City of Opa-locka Police Department hosted its First Annual “Shop With a Cop” event last Friday.

The students experienced a one-onone shopping experience with an Opalocka police officer at the Walmart at 1425 NE 163rd St., North Miami Beach.

Each student received a $75 gift card to purchase gifts for themselves and their families.

During the event, police officers escorted each child through the store to assist in selecting appropriate gifts. While shopping, the children were able to get to know the officer, as well as engage in positive interaction and discussion.

A total of 12 children will be selected yearly for the program. Each principal will provide the names of four students, ages 6-11 years.

The program will include the local elementary schools that are within the Opa-locka jurisdiction (Nathan B. Young, Robert B. Ingraham, and Beacon College Prep). The principal from each participating school will be responsible for the selection of all students. The Police Department will have no involvement in the selection process.

Children who are selected to participate in a shopping trip will be based on attendance, behavior, grade point average, avoiding fighting and bullying, and no suspensions.

City Manager John E. Pate expressed pleasure with the event’s “positive impact.”