It wasn't the regularly scheduled National Night Out in Troutman on Saturday afternoon, but it was still time for the Troutman Police Department and the community there to get to know each other better.
"We still wanted to do something that shows our positive relationship between the citizens and the police department, we've had a really good turnout and we've had people thank us for doing something, even if it's not what we'd do traditionally," Troutman Police Chief Tina Fleming said. "We're hoping the citizens will see we are here from them, no matter what kind of negative stories they may here. That's not us, that's not the majority of law enforcement."
It's been a tumultuous year for law enforcement as calls for police reform around the country were at an all-time high this summer. Fleming hopes that events like this as well as balancing safety and how officers work will build up trust in the community.
"We cannot be 100% successful in our position without the help of the community," Fleming said. "We depend on people helping us out and giving us information so we can solve crimes. It's great that people can feel comfortable with us and know us by name."
Some of the people getting to know the officers were Kaitlyn and Wyatt Adams, who were enjoying taking photos in the miniature set up in front of the police department.
"It's fun for my son, and he gets to know all these officers, and as you can see, he's got a good relationship with them," Kaitlyn said as Wyatt was playing and laughing with Officer Daniel Bova.
There were giveaways of different items and snacks at the event and their Safety Town was set up so kids could play and ride their bikes through while talking with officers.
National Night Out typically takes place on the second Tuesday of August, but with the coronavirus and Gov. Roy Cooper's mandates for social distancing, it forced the Troutman Police Department to postpone its event. Typically Troutman's event would take place at Troutman ESC Park and be a larger gathering.
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