CRESTVIEW — When Weston Hinshaw and his mom, Ashley, stopped by the Crestview Police Department June 20, he thought they’d just be dropping off a donation of gently-loved stuffed animals for police officers to give to troubled kids.
Instead, he ended up having what he afterward called, “the best day ever” as Deputy Chief Rick Brown gave the 7-year-old a personally guided tour of the Stillwell Boulevard police station.
Wes, as his mom calls him, met police officers, learned how evidence is secured, saw the peaceful chapel where officers can meet with chaplains or have quiet meditative time, met a prospective officer recruit, and explored the agency’s rescue vehicle.
The opportunity to climb in the back, give a blast on the vehicle’s siren and see its multitude of emergency and flood lights added some dazzle to Wesley’s unexpected tour. Standing next to the vehicle’s bullet-resistant tires, he was amazed to see they were nearly as big in diameter as he was tall.
“He said on the ride home, ‘Mama, I just can't stop smiling,’” Ashley said. “‘This is the best day ever!’”
During his tour, Wes met Investigator Shawn Temple, one of the Police Department’s training officers and S.W.A.T. team leaders, who guided him around the vehicle bay. There, Wes saw mobile command and crime scene vehicles, the agency’s patriotically-decorated Humvee, and patrol bicycles that are even equipped with flashing emergency lights.
While Wes was impressed with everything he saw, the Police Department was more
impressed by the boy’s generosity.
“That’s a pretty big thing you’re doing for other kids,” Brown told Wes as he accepted the overstuffed bag of toys before conducting the tour.
“Wes absolutely loved it,” Ashley said. “It's a pleasure to help the (police) team in any way we can.”