Pierre police officers, on behalf of all law enforcement officers in Pierre and Fort Pierre, invite anyone to stop in for a free cup of coffee and relaxed conversation with officers from 8-10 a.m., on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at the Branding Iron Bistro, 420 W. Sioux Ave.
It’s National Coffee With a Cop Day.
Wednesday, Oct. 2, is National Coffee With a Cop Day. In Pierre, this year’s event runs from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. on that day.
Coffee With a Cop creates a special opportunity for people to ask questions, voice concerns and get to know the officers in their community.
In 2016, the day began as part of National Community Policing Week. Now it continues, on the first Wednesday of October each year.
Pierre Police began participating in the event in 2017, led by the efforts of Pierre Police Sgt. Samson Boutchee. He’s organized to be held more than just once a year, too.
The event includes deputies from Stanley County and Hughes County, state Highway Patrol troopers, other state law officers and federal law enforcement officers, wildlife and conservation officers from the state and federal agencies also involved.
This is the fourth Coffee with a Cop event held in Pierre, Police Chief Jason Jones said.
The first was December 2017 at Burger King, the second in March 2018 at Taco John’s, and the third was in April 2019 at McDonald’s.
Boutchee has told the Capital Journal that the idea behind it is more than just having a free coffee.
Such events can build relationships between members of the public and the law officers who have sworn to keep them safe, he said.
Boutchee was one of more than a dozen law officers involved in a late night standoff near McDonald’s about a year ago that could have led to someone getting killed. Good police work and some restraint helped it turn out better.
That kind of event can build ties in the community of trust by police and by the public that can help avoid bad outcomes, he said.
Little things like “Coffee with Cop,” maybe aren’t so little. It means police aren’t necessarily on the “other side” for a community such as Pierre.