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Flint police officer helps 9-year old overcome fear of law enforcement

Published: Feb. 22, 2021 at 6:08 PM EST
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) -(02/22/21)- Melanie Garfield can’t pinpoint exactly when her 9-year old son, Aidan became fearful of police.

But she believes it started when he was just a toddler.

“He had called 9-11 a couple of times, left it an open line. They called back he didn’t answer because he was scared so they showed up, like they were doing their job, " Garfield said.

Garfield says after watching her son suffer each time he saw an officer--- she knew she wanted to change his perception of law enforcement. So she reached out to Flint Police-- and she says Chief Green arraigned for one of his officers to meet with Aidan last Friday.

That officer was Paul Spann.

“It definitely was a unique call. And it was something that definitely brought a lot of joy to me. And I was more than happy to respond when I received your request from chief,” said Flint Police Officer, Paul Spann.

Spann who has been an officer for about 7 months says being able to connect with the community-- with kids like Aidan, is one of the reasons he wanted to work in law enforcement.

“For me it gave me some affirmation and reassurance that I’m out here that we are making a difference and definitely doing good in the community,” Spann said.

Garfield hopes her son’s experience with officer Spann can help other kids.

“I just hope like he can relax and not fear them and know that they’re here to help us, they’re not here to hurt us. And I also hope like like that post that I put on Facebook I hope that it gives like other children that suffer maybe a reassurance.” Garfield said.

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