Police Officer Buys Car Seats for Family Who Couldn't Afford Them
After pulling over a mom whose young daughters weren't in car seats, a policeman went beyond his call of duty.
Car seats are one of those baby gear items that can create a lot of worry and stress for just about any parent. Not only do they need to be manufactured per specific guidelines and installed properly, but they can cost a pretty penny. In fact, they're so pricey that a Milwaukee, Wisconsin mom named Andrella "Lashae" Jackson was struggling to buy them. "With bills coming up and winter coming up, I have to get coats and boots and shoes for my kids," Jackson told CNN affiliate WTMJ. "So, it was hard for me."
Jackson was recently driving with her two young daughters, Niyah and Sky, neither of whom was in a car seat or was wearing a seat belt, when Officer Kevin Zimmerman pulled Jackson over for not having proper registration, the police department said. The single mom of five expected to be ticketed, but instead, Jackson received a simple verbal warning—and much more than she anticipated.
- RELATED: Car Seats Expire & Here's Why
Zimmerman told CNN in a statement that following his interaction with Jackson, he went to Walmart to buy two car seats. He also grabbed stickers and children's books from the police department, then visited Jackson's home and installed the car seats himself.
"My girls couldn't stop thanking him, and it made them smile. Shout out to Officer Zimmerman at District 5," Jackson said in a Facebook post that has racked up over 1K reactions and over 800 comments. "We appreciate it a lot."
Zimmerman explained that he was raised to "do the right thing even if no one is looking." He has also seen many accidents in which children went through windshields because they weren't properly secured, so he wanted to do what he could to keep these L.O.s safe.
"I am a dad of three kids and can't imagine anything happening to them or not being able to have them secured in their car seats," Zimmerman said.
In the wake of the officer's selfless act, he's received local praise. The Milwaukee Police Department lauded Zimmerman on Facebook "for going the extra mile and going above and beyond your call of duty."
- RELATED: 7 Tips for Buying a Newborn Car Seat
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 675 children (12 years old and younger) died as occupants in motor vehicle crashes, and nearly 116,000 were injured in 2017 in the U.S. Of the children who died in a crash in 2017 (for which restraint use was known), 35% were not buckled up.
Here's hoping Jackson's story serves to inspire, inform, and spread awareness around this crucial, lifesaving subject.