A year later, community support still strong to ‘Back the Blue’ in Albertville

ALBERTVILLE, Ala. -- Last year an anonymous donation sparked something Albertville Police officers never thought would grow to where it is today.

It started with an anonymous $1,000 donation to the Albertville Police Department, and it spread from there.

The department's administrative assistant had the idea to use the money to make shirts - blue and black, that said 'Back the Blue' on the back.

The idea took off and now a year later it's still going strong. "We've mailed shirts across the United States, and the public support has just been crazy," said Albertville Police Chief Jamie Smith.

Smith added that wasn't something they ever expected. "We've mailed shirts and had people come by from all over north Alabama."

As the money came in the department put it to use. Smith estimates the fundraiser brought in thousands of dollars. "We've bought various items of equipment for the police department," he said.

They've also donated to charity and helped other law enforcement agencies in Marshall County.

Aside from the dollar amount though, the community support is what Smith says means the most.

"It's one of those things that you probably can't, I couldn't sit here and describe it well enough. To know that you're out there doing what you do and people out in the community appreciate it and they stand behind you," Smith said.

You can buy Back the Blue shirts at the Albertville Police Department during normal business hours. The shirts are $15 each.