Bad Axe, Mich. — Imagine being tapped on the shoulder by the long arm of the law and getting cash instead of a ticket.
It happened in Mid-Michigan.
“I’ve had something to do with this place for 33 years and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Kelly Hanson, Huron County’s sheriff.
In an unsuspecting way one sheriff in Michigan is changing the way law enforcement officials interact with the community.
“It’s been a lot of fun. It’s definitely a change the police aren’t always known, of course, with coming to your door with good news,” Hanson said.
Hanson and Sgt. Jim Hunt have taken to the streets of Huron County on a mission to distribute $4,000 to deserving individuals.
“You know, I get some strange looks right off the bat, you know. People are suspicious,” Hunt said.
Hunt developed a strategy to turn those frowns and suspicious looks upside down.
“You want to get into it right away, we have something for you, it’s all good. You know, Merry Christmas. And then you always get the smile and then they’re really shocked. So it’s fun,” Hunt said.
Hunt personally delivered $100 bills to 40 different families.
“I’m amazed that they’d do it, I think it’s wonderful,” said Marguetite Cherry.
Her husband was more skeptical.
“I’m curious to know where the money came from and how they decided who to give it to,” Doherty Cherry said.
Four families donated $1,000 a piece.
Those families chose to remain anonymous, asking the sheriff’s department to select the deserving families.
Hanson reached out to churches, social workers and other organizations in the community for help.
The sheriffs office and residents believe this sort of random act of kindness helps to solidify the bonds between law enforcement and the community.
“We’re glad to help and make a little difference during the holidays,” Hanson said.