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      Cheerful Home children get to "Shop with a Cop"

      It's not often you see dozens of uniformed police officers shopping the aisles of Kmart. Saturday, Quincy police officers grabbed a cart and took the hands of underprivileged kids in an effort to give them an early Christmas gift. It's all part of their 26th annual "Shop with a Cop" event.

      By helping children do their holiday shopping, these officers did much more than put presents under the Christmas Tree.

      "They get a very positive experience, especially dealing with law enforcement. This is a positive way for young people to be with law enforcement. Unfortunately they're not always positive dealings so that's why this is all set up," said Steve Scherer, an animal control officer.

      Parents came to watch as Santa presented their child with a gift before they set off to shop.

      "The good part of this is being able to shop with the cops. I think it really helps them relate with them, maybe feel more secure. If they're out and let's say something were ever to happen, they might feel more comfortable with the cops or even something like that. I think this is a great program for the kids," said Evan Sprinkle, a parent.

      If the shopping cart totaled more than the amount allotted to each officer, we found many officers may have made up the difference themselves. Donations came from Kmart, The Honda Gold Wings Road Riders Association, and the Quincy Police Department.

      *By Chrissy Mueller