Sometimes people just need a helping hand, and few know that better than this New Hampshire police officer who went out of his way to help a struggling mom.
Officer Michael Kotsonis was called to a Portsmouth grocery store to investigate a shoplifting case after a woman was caught on surveillance stealing a few items. Kotsonis, a 19-year veteran on the force, was able to track the woman down, but his motives in finding her changed when he realized what she’d stolen. It turns out the woman was a struggling mom who’d taken some Crisco and vanilla frosting so she could make her daughter a birthday cake.
Instead of pursuing legal action against the mom, Kotsonis returned to the store and picked up the tab for the ingredients she needed to bake the birthday cake. He returned everything to the woman and let her go after a simple conversation about theft. The officer tells Fox25 that while he never condones stealing of any kind, he’s simply “not going to take away a kid’s birthday cake.”
Though his sweet gesture is currently trending on social media, Kotsonis says he didn’t do it for the attention. It was an impressed store employee who reported it to the media, and when asked about it, Kotsonis said that officers do kind things for people all the time — it’s just part of the job. He adds, “What you do when no one is looking, that’s the character of someone.”
You don’t often think about it, but for families who struggle day-to-day to put food on the table, a simple birthday cake can end up being an impossible luxury item. Cake mixes aren’t the most common good found at food banks or other places struggling parents might go for help. This officer not only helped a child have a good birthday, but he also showed a ton of compassion towards a mom who likely just needed a leg up right now.
With so many bad things going on in the world, it’s easy to overlook the good things that are happening in our own communities each and every day. There are so many people who go to extraordinary lengths to help others, and this story is a good reminder that each of us has the power to carry out simple acts of kindness too. Three cheers to this generous officer for going above and beyond the call of duty to help someone in need.