JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Jonesboro police officers may soon start issuing tickets to children in town, but it's not a bad thing.
Jonesboro Police Officer Blake Easley said the idea came to him after he saw a post about game wardens with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission issuing ice cream citations to kids who wore their life jackets this summer.
"I started doing a little research and I presented it to Chief about us starting to do a program like that and he said go for it," Easley said. "He's all about community policing."
Easley, who loves community policing too, said things like these build relationships with kids in town.
"It builds trust tremendously," Easley said. "If you're kind to them, and you do things for them, it just works wonders."
Easley said they're still working out the logistics of everything right now, but they won't just be handing out citations. Those tickets would come with the chance to do various things in town like bowling, skating or going to the movies.
"If we give them something that gives them an hour or two or any time off the street or whatever they're doing, I think that's positive in itself. It'll give them something to do that they may not normally have been able to do," Easley said.
Easley said in time, children will start doing the right thing naturally.
"One officer wrote that he had kids that came up and asked him for the positive tickets, and they made sure they were doing positive actions when he was around," Easley said. "I think that's important, and I think it's important that they know that we don't just notice bad things that they do. We notice a lot of the things that they do, and this will give us a chance to show them that we notice those things."
Already, multiple businesses have asked to partner with Easley, but if more want to get on board as a community partner, they can contact him at email@example.com. You can also call the police department at (870) 935-5551.
Easley said he hopes to have the program up and running in the next couple of months.
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