Law enforcement is obviously focused on protecting and serving, but officers also work hard to build bonds with people in their community. That was on display in Florida recently, when an officer had a footrace with two siblings that was a rematch five years in the making.
In 2015, Tampa Police Department K-9 Master Patrol Officer T. Bergman was challenged to a race by a young boy named Nas. According to Bergman, he lost that race “by a step.” He didn’t forget that defeat, and when he saw Nas again recently, he decided it was time for a rematch.
This time, Bergman issued the challenge and Nas accepted. And this time, Bergman was the one who managed to grab a narrow victory. However, this year’s competition had a new wrinkle: Nas’s little sister Loriel was on hand, and she vowed to avenge her brother’s loss.
Bergman raced against her too, and she managed to pull away for a win. But regardless of the races’ outcomes, the most important part was how much fun the kids had. The Tampa P.D. posted video of the races on Facebook, and the kids were smiling, laughing and having a great time.
The feel-good video garnered thousands of views, and commenters were quick to praise Bergman’s efforts to have some simple fun with local kids.
“Great job Officer Bergman, you are a great role model,” said one commenter.
“This is community policing. Great job!” said another.
“I think she could have smoked you, but she was being nice,” said a third, offering commentary about Bergman’s race against Loriel.
In today’s environment when tensions between citizens and cops are high, it’s nice to see a simple act of bonding between a cop and some kids. It may be simple, but it’s small moments like these that form lasting connections between law enforcement and the communities they serve. So well done, Officer Bergman! And we’ll be waiting for your next rematch, this time with Loriel.