The Shafter Police Department hosted a Coffee with a Cop on Wednesday morning at Shafter's Tin Cup to allow residents a chance to meet officers, voice concerns and ask questions.
The event was a part of National Coffee with a Cop Day, with cities and towns all over the nation holding similar events.
Shafter Police Chief Kevin Zimmermann and his staff were joined by Shafter City Manager Gonzalez, Shafter Council Members Cathy Prout, Pete Espinoza, Chad Givens, and other city staff in greeting the public and enjoying coffee and conversation. Shafter officers were able to answer questions from community members on a one-on-one basis. The Coffee with a Cop is also a way for the community to get to know the officers and staff better and build lasting relationships.
Residents said they enjoyed the opportunity to get to know the officers who patrol their streets and work to protect them and keep them safe.
Richard Salazar, who was there with his two children, said that events like this are important to keep communication open between the residents and the Police Department. "With all of the things going on in the nation, it is important that we know that the police department is here to protect us, we are on the same team," said Salazar. "My kids loved meeting the officers and learning that they are friends and are here to keep us safe and protected."
The event was held a day after the announcement came out that the Shafter Police Department had secured a federal grant of $6 million to build a substation on Gossamer Road in the Gossamer Grove housing development.
The Police Department has enjoyed a good relationship with the area residents, but, according to Chief Zimmermann, this project will make the operations even smoother, with having a 24/7 presence out in the area. "With more houses and residents, comes the need for more protection. We need this to protect the city even more effectively," concluded Zimmermann.
Assistant Police Chief Diana Burnett said that the event was a great way to meeting with the public and help build relationships with the residents that they serve.
She said that they are here to serve the public and anyone with a concern or question is welcome to contact the Police Department or visit the station.