Fla. deputy buys Halloween costume for young aspiring LEO
Deputy Stephanie Sanderson received praise online and from her department for the gift
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — A Florida deputy was praised on social media for buying a young boy a police officer Halloween costume.
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister posted photographs of the pair to his Facebook page and included the story of how the deputy and child met, written by the deputy herself.
According to the post, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Deputy Stephanie Sanderson first met the boy, who she identified as KG, while on her way to a call in early September. He was riding a toy police motorcycle and, as she passed in her patrol car, “started waving so hard (Sanderson) thought his arm would fall off.”
Sanderson pulled over and told KG she would come back after the call so he could show her his toy motorcycle and she could show him her patrol car.
While on her way back to keep that promise, she was dispatched to a 911 call at KG’s house.
“As I pulled up to the house, I was greeted by my new friend and his grandmother, who explained he called 911 so (I) would know what house to come to,” Sanderson wrote in her Facebook post. “After a short lesson on the proper use of the 911 system, I learned my new friend aspires to be a law enforcement officer when he grows up. He told me he wanted to get a uniform like mine for when he patrols his neighborhood.”
Sanderson wrote that she purchased a police jacket and hat and had them customized to say “Deputy KG.” Administration staff at her district’s office also chipped in to give KG some HSCO school supplies and other gifts, she said.
Chronister praised Sanderson in his post, saying that her story “is why we do what we do.”
Sanderson wrote that meeting KG has been “the most rewarding part” of her career so far.
“As deputies, we often go to some very difficult calls, which can be emotionally exhausting, but having the chance to develop a lasting relationship with a young member of the community makes everything worth it,” she wrote.