Tupelo’s Shop with a Cop: Kids check items off Christmas wish lists

Walmart and Chick-fil-A fund the shopping spree that pairs kids with officers for a fun outing

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – A police escort led the way for 16 kids as they arrived at the North Gloster Street Walmart for their shopping trip.

After a quick photo, it was time to pair each student up with an officer, from either the Tupelo Police Department or the Natchez Trace Parkway Rangers.

Officer Chris Wray was quickly helping Noah find the perfect fit in a Christmas sweater. Each child had $350 to spend. For Walmart, Shop with a Cop is an opportunity to show community support.

“This is where we get a chance to really touch the kids in the community, partner with local law enforcement, state, federal. They come out here and get to make sure kids get a chance to interact with police officers and find something they want for Christmas,” said Kyle Kloes of Walmart.

The young shoppers were focused and took home presents for themselves and family members.

What are some of your favorite things?

“A bike, scooter, and a hula hoop,” said Kaya, a young shopper.

Did you get a Nerf Gun and Hot Wheels?

“Yes, and a LOL for my sister,” said Noah, a young shopper.

For officers, Shop with a Cop is a chance to build stronger bonds with the kids.

“We become police to protect and serve. As school resource officers, we get to serve the community, reach out, and serve the kids. And we try and make a difference in their lives and this is what it is all about,” said Wray.

“It gives children a chance to see the police for what we really are, which is being a human,” said Tupelo Police Chief John Quaka.

For the kids, the fun doesn’t end when the shopping spree is over. They went to police headquarters for lunch, courtesy of Chick-fil-A.

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