Boaz Police officers take on a different operation – showing another side of the badge

Northeast Alabama
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BOAZ, Ala. -- Boaz Police officers are on a mission, but it's unlike any police sting or undercover operation you may have seen before.

Sometimes you'll see these Boaz Police officers handing out popsicles instead of tickets, or scope out a neighborhood with a cooler in tow.

They hope the people, the littlest in the community, that they come in contact with receive a message. "To let them know that they don't have to be scared of us, we're there if they need us, to call on us, to help them feel comfortable, that we're there to help them," said Captain Robert Allbritten.

"Just giving back to the community so that when we arrive on scene, whether it's good or bad, they have a little bit better feeling about the police, especially in these days and times," added Patrolman James Striplin.

"We live here just like everyone else, and the guys who do this job, they do it because they care about not only the city that they work for, but they live here as well. They care about the people who are in the community, adults, and kids" said Chief Josh Gaskin.

The officers are making it a point to get out there and do more than their everyday jobs.

They've done Operation Popsicle, interacted with kids at community events, and gave tours to students.

Officers say now they can see a difference in the kids when they are out on calls. "Before, a lot of times you might not actually see the kids. They don't know, sometimes they're scared of us, they don't know why we're there," Gaskin said, "It was really good to see what we did made a difference in the way that they saw the police and the way they viewed the police."

So while reports, patrolling, and answering calls are the officers' job, they've added to it: showing a different side of the badge.

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