After Catching a Grandma Shoplifting Eggs, This Police Officer Did Something Amazing

His act of kindness, which has since gone viral, has urged others to help.
Dec 13, 2014· 1 MIN READ
Kristina Bravo is Assistant Editor at TakePart.

Recent events have put law enforcement in a negative light, but this story shows there are still inspiring stories to tell.

Her family had gone two days without eating when 47-year-old grandmother Helen Johnson of Tarrant, Ala., went to a local store to buy a carton of eggs last week. When she realized that she was 50 cents short, she felt desperate, and she put three eggs in her pocket.

“Of course, when I put them in my jacket pocket, they broke,” Johnson told AL.com. “I’m not a good thief at all.”

When a store employee confronted her, the woman admitted what she’d done. Soon, Tarrant Police Officer William Stacy arrived. Johnson told him that she was having a hard time finding a job and that she needed to feed her grandchildren. Her disability benefits could only pay the rent. Stacy ran into the store and bought her a carton of eggs.

“She was trying to get some food for her babies, not candy, not anything just some real food for her kids and couldn’t pay for it,” Stacy told ABC 3340.

A bystander recorded the incident with his phone, and it has since gone viral. People from across the country have been calling the Terrant Police Department to send donations to Johnson or to the food and toy drive run by local the fire department.

This week, Stacy delivered donated groceries to Johnson’s home. Though he doesn’t like being in the spotlight, he hopes that the story has a positive impact.

“I just did my job—serve and protect my community,” the officer said. “I feel like this video has made a huge, positive impact for the image of all law enforcement officers all over the United States. We’re not all crooked individuals looking to beat up or kill somebody. That’s not what we swore to do. That’s not why I wear this badge every day.”