TIPP CITY, Ohio (WDTN) – During weekday mornings and afternoons, the Tipp City Police Department was patrolling the local school district buildings, keeping an eye on students and traffic while engaging with local children.
After schools closed in March due to the COVID-19 outbreak, those children are stuck indoors waiting out the virus that has shut down much of the country. Tipp City police are trying to brighten their day with its ‘Books and Badges’ videos the department began posting on its Facebook page Thursday.
Tipp City Police Chief Eric Burris said several departments across the country were posting videos of their officers reading books to kids on department Facebook pages. After being presented with the idea, he thought it would be a fun way for the police to interact with the community.
“Everyone is looking for good news right now,” Burris told WDTN.com. “We’ve had several posts the last several weeks featuring our department K9 Pasha, using him to demonstrate COVID-19 tips. We try to bring some humor and hopefully it gives someone a smile.”
The department posted its first video Thursday, with Officer Stephanie Dickerson reading “The Wonkey Donkey” by Craig Smith.
“She brought up the idea of it and she does a good job reading,” Burris said. “She’s really good with kids and she’s animated when she’s reading a story. It’s pretty interesting.”
Five hours after it was posted, the video had 87 shares, nearly 4,000 views and 78 comments. He said the department would post more “Books and Badges” videos for the next few weeks.
The department is also taking part in Autism Awareness month in April. Tipp City officers will wear shoulder patches instead of their standard patches.