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Monday, November 21, 2022

OPD sergeant recognized for act of kindness

The Ocala Police Department has recognized one of its sergeants who performed a small act of kindness for a local resident last week.

On Thursday, November 17, OPD officers responded to the 3500 block of SE Fort King Street due to a reported battery incident in the area, according to a Facebook post from OPD. Upon arrival, the officers made contact with a woman who was walking and carrying bags of groceries.

OPD stated that the woman appeared to match the description of the alleged battery victim, and officers observed that she was crying and appeared to be upset. When officers spoke with her, she informed them that her cellphone had died. She added that was upset because she was unable to call for an Uber driver and had to walk home from Publix with her groceries.

Even though the officers learned that the woman did not live far from the location, Sergeant Gauthier decided to lend a helping hand and offered her a ride to her residence. OPD stated that the act of kindness “brought a smile to her face.”

Ocala resident Jill Beck saw the woman enter the sergeant’s patrol vehicle and took a photo.

OPD sergeant gives woman carrying groceries a ride home (November 17, 2022)
This photo was taken just moments after the woman entered the sergeant’s patrol vehicle (Photo courtesy of Jill Beck)

In a social media post that was shared by OPD, Beck stated, “In a world where people just drive by and ignore folks in need, (the sergeant) stopped and made a difference in her day.”

On its Facebook page, the Ocala Police Department thanked Sergeant Gauthier for his act of kindness. OPD also thanked Beck for taking the picture and sharing the story on social media.

Officers were able to locate the battery victim.