Cops Who Care: Big-Hearted BPD Officers Team Up with Local Shoe Store in Successful Effort to Transform One Boy’s Bad Day into a Birthday He Won’t Soon Forget: A few weeks ago, Officers Skye Robinson and Sean Rooney, both assigned to the Boston Police School Unit, responded to a grammar school to take a report from a 7th grade student who had been robbed of approximately $100.00 on his way to school. While talking to the student, 13 year-old Amir Taste, officers learned that Amir had been robbed of money given to him on his birthday. Officers further learned that the boy had intended to use his birthday money to buy a new pair of sneakers. Upon hearing that the money stolen was money earmarked for new shoes, the officers knew right away that this was a story that had to have a happy ending.
Believing everybody’s birthday should be a cause for celebration, the officers were determined to turn a negative into a positive and do everything in their power to put a smile on Amir’s face. So, a phone call was made to a friend, Justin Kirkland-Smith, who works at the Concepts shoe store in Cambridge in an effort to secure a new pair of shoes for Amir. When the situation was explained to Justin, he and his co-workers not only wanted to help but they also wanted to pay for the shoes. Said Justin, “Once the officers told us why they were buying the sneakers, there was no way we were gonna take their money.” In addition to the new sneakers, Justin informed the officers that the store wished to donate a t-shirt to Amir as well. So, with two belated birthday gifts in tow, the officers set out in search of Amir. When the officers found him and presented him with the new shoes and shirt, Amir’s reaction was equal parts disbelief and utter euphoria. To say he was surprised would not be an understatement. Said Amir to the officers, “I can’t believe you guys did this. A lot of people said they wanted to help me, but you guys actually did. I can’t thank you enough. Is there anything I can do to repay you guys?” In answer to that question, the officers made one simple request, saying, “All we ask is for you to write a thank you note to the folks at Concepts.”
The boy quickly consented and a few days later, the folks at Concepts received the following thank you letter (see image below). The letter, in part, reads as follows: “I’m so glad you guys donated the shoes to me … I’m glad there are people in this world - besides my teachers and parents - who actually look out for me.” When later asked to explain why it was important to look out for Amir, Officer Skye Robinson summed it up succinctly humbly explaining, “It was the right thing to do. In fact, as soon as Amir told us his story, we knew what had to be done. But it was a team effort all around and we certainly have to thank Concepts for helping us turn one kid’s bad day into a birthday he’ll … hopefully … never forget.”