Down in Somerset, Massachusetts, Officer Matt Lima found himself responding to a call in an unusual way. He was called to a report of shoplifting on December 20th at a local Stop & Shop, where he found two women with two young children who had been accused of putting groceries into bags at a self-checkout kiosk without scanning them.
He went to investigate the situation and found they had reportedly been spotted not scanning items, and that those items were found in their bags but not on the receipt. When he asked about the items they had allegedly attempted to take, he was told they had been put back on the shelves. That is when things took a turn.
Officer Lima spoke to the women who told him they had fallen on hard times and were just trying to provide a Christmas dinner for the children.
“The two children with the women reminded me of my kids, so I had to help them out,” Officer Lima said. He served them with Notice Not To Tresspass forms, and informed the associate at the store he would not be pressing criminal charges as all the missing items on their receipt were groceries.
Then went and purchased two $250 gift cards with his own money which he presented to the women so that they could go purchase groceries for their Christmas dinner at a different Stop & Shop location.
This action is exactly how we are encouraged to behave when confronted with situations like this. With compassion, caring, and grace. It is a beautiful example of that Christ like love that we see so often around the Christmas season and is your Good News Story of the Day which you can find here.
It also saw him commended by his department. “His actions exemplify what it means to protect and serve the members of our community,” Chief George McNeil said on the department’s website.
Story and Image from the Associated Press.