It’s a tough time for police officers. People tend not to trust them, for both good and bad reasons. But that’s why it’s so refreshing to hear stories about positive interactions between police and citizens.
Cops have to deal with all kinds of complaints, from serious ones like shootings to regular old noise complaints.
One officer in Oklahoma City was recently called to the scene of a noise complaint. A man had set up a drum kit in the street and was playing for the start of the weekend traffic.
What could have been an unpleasant interaction, however, turned into something great when the officer mentioned he used to play the drums.
Instead of creating an angry scene, the man invited the officer to sit down and show him what he could do. So, Officer Ross did. Several passersbys captured the moment on video, showing Ross jamming out on the side of the road.
Since then, Ross has received praise for his friendly handling of the interaction.
But in his mind, it was all about reaching out to others not just as an authority figure but as a fellow citizen.
“I firmly believe that the success of our department, in part, is about our interactions with citizens,” said Ross. “I could have gone over there, talking down to them, telling them it was too loud and they needed to turn it down…but this was a lot more fun…it gave me a chance to interact with the people I serve. I got some hugs and handshakes at the end of it all, then they turned it down and left.”
The Oklahoma Police Department shared the video on its Facebook page.
In it, Ross can be seen — and heard — tearing up the drums for about 30 seconds. Several people stopped to pull their phones out and capture the moment.
“Yes, our officers have a job to do, and laws to enforce, but how great is it when we can interact with the great citizens we serve??” said the police department’s Facebook post.
Since the video was shared in April, it’s accrued 16,000 views.
People are full of praise for Officer Ross’s way of approaching the men with the noise complaint. They were also quick to share their own stories of positive interactions with police officers who were handling noise complaints and other calls.
People took the story as a reminder that we’re all on the same side.
“A couple of year’s ago police were called about kid’s playing in the street sure enough when the officer got there he founds some kid’s playing basketball,” wrote one Facebook commenter. “He joined them and played for about 30 minutes or so he told the kid’s he was gonna come back with back-up next time….can’t remember if it was the next day but anyway when he did return he had back-up in the form of hall of fame Squeal O’Neal….people gotta remember the cop’s are human to and would rather be friends than enimies.” [sic]
Not only did Officer Ross do the Oklahoma City Police Department proud, but he also showed that he can play a rocking drum solo.
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