Most of the time police officers meet people, it is at their worst. Either they did something terrible, were accused of doing something terrible that they never did or something terrible happened to them.
“They are either victims or offenders,” Waterford Police Officer David Anderson said. “We generally see people on their worst day.”
So Tuesday, for the fourth year in a row, they tried something different - seeing them on a normal day after work at a nice restaurant. Waterford police officers acted as assistants to bartenders and waiters at Filomena’s as part of Tip-A-Cop, a fundraiser for the Special Olympics.
“It is just such a great cause, and you get to see the benefit right away,” said Waterford Youth Officer Nicole VanOverloop, who along with Anderson started the program. “It is something we look forward to.”
The event lasted just one evening, but generally raises more than $1,000 for the Special Olympics, Waterford Police Lt. Brett Mahoney said. About ten cops participated in the event.
How It Began
The Waterford Police Department participates in several events for the Special Olympics, from the torch run in June to “” at Mohegan Sun. But Anderson and VanOverloop wanted to do more, and four years ago went to Filomena’s owner Michael Buscetto with the idea of Tip-a-Cop.
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“I think it is great,” said Buscetto, who holds many fundraisers at his restaurant. “We do this because this is what we are about. We are active in the community; we give back.”
The event began with cops helping Filomena’s wait staff and bar staff. At the end of the meal, the police officer leaves an envelope at the customers' table, where they can donate money to the Special Olympics.