Whitewater Police Department’s First Annual Shop with a Cop a Success

Josmar Ortiz with Officers Mike Zens (left) and Saul Valadez (right).

The Whitewater Police Department held their first successful Shop with a Cop event on December 15th.

Washington Elementary student, Josmar Ortiz, was selected by Principal Tom Grosinske and his staff to shop with local police officers for the upcoming holiday season. Josmar was presented with a certificate and $100 from the Whitewater Crime Prevention Fund.

Officers Mike Zens and Saul Valadez helped pick out gifts with Josmar at the local Walmart. Josmar then enjoyed a ride in the officer’s squad car back to the Whitewater Police Department, where officers, along with dispatchers Maria Tlougan and Heidi Gempler helped wrap the presents. Josmar then took a tour of the police department and met on-duty officers before returning home with his wrapped gifts.

“Our support Services Manager, Kathy Boyd, recently had a friend experience this program and spoke so highly about it we felt it would be a great program to implement at the Whitewater Police Department,” said Chief Lisa Otterbacher. “Officer Jake Hintz was also involved in this program in Dane County and enjoyed some wonderful experiences. We just knew it would be a great event for our team.”

With the help from Boyd, Hintz and Captain Dan Meyer, the department was able to pull the event together in a short time and with great success. The department is already excited and planning for next year’s event.

“This community event served as a wonderful opportunity for the Whitewater Police Department personnel to positively connect with one of our community’s families,” said Otterbacher, “Something that is important to us all year long, but feels even more meaningful this time of year.”

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