24th Annual

Shop with a Cop

"Shop with a Cop" is a well-known event in San Diego County. Hundreds of deserving children participate every year: this year saw over 300. They get the chance to experience a little holiday magic courtesy of local law enforcement. It brings the holiday spirit to those who might not otherwise be able to experience it.

Shop with a Cop is a non-profit. It has branches across the United States. In San Diego, hosting duties rotate among various police departments. This year, the event was hosted by the Carlsbad and Oceanside Police Departments. This is Shop with a Cop's 24th year, and it was jam-packed with fun for all the kids. The day began at SeaWorld, which, along with Target, is one of the local sponsors. After enjoying breakfast with participating officers, all of whom arrived in uniform, the children were treated to a private dolphin show that had a tropical Christmas theme.

Afterwards, participants had the opportunity to enjoy an amazing shopping spree at the Target on Sports Arena Boulevard. Officers stopped traffic just so that the kids could have the store to themselves. With the aid of grants, donations, and fundraisers, the children got a $150 shopping spree for themselves and friends or family. Santa also made an appearance to greet the kids as they entered the store. Afterwards, the children were photographed next to their overflowing shopping carts. The Target was completely decked out in holiday decorations, complete with twinkling lights and Christmas trees.

Peace Officers Research Association of California President Brian Marvel explained the importance of the event. "This is one way that we get to know and engage with the communities we serve and help families less fortunate during the holiday season." Children gain a positive impression of law enforcement through a day of fun activities.