EASTON — Easton Police Department held a Coffee with a Cop meeting on Friday, July 12, at Starbucks, where they met with several locals and tourists at the 8254 Ocean Gateway location.
The purpose of the event is to provide residents with the opportunity to meet their local law enforcement officers, ask questions, voice concerns and learn more about the EPD. The community outreach initiative is informal so that citizens are comfortable discussing issues such as criminal activity, crime prevention and relationships with local police personnel.
Easton Police Department Patrol Officer Kyle Willey said that during the event that although there has been a lack of recruits for police officers, there has been interested applicants. The Easton Police Department currently has 44 police officers, with a capacity to have 48 officers; and the retirement benefit is listed at 22 years.
“We increased our social media presence recently, so we have been getting more applicants, so when I heard that there was an applicant a week, I was surprised,” said Willey. “It is more than before. We are getting an increase of actual applications so that is good so far, and I hope that that will work out.”
Willey also added that some officers are coming up on retirement and more positions will need filling. The application process and explanation of each key point can be found on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.
John Witkosky of Damascus was passing by Easton to Tilghman and said he was delighted to see the Easton Police Department reaching out to the community. He would like to see more police departments gain a connection with the community all around Maryland.
“I enjoyed talking to the Easton Police Department. They gave us advice on what places to go while on our visit and were very welcoming,” said Witkosky. “The department has personal small town touch to the community, and I appreciate that they risk their lives every day to be here.”
Starbucks Shift Supervisor Angelica Mullins was pleased to host Coffee with a Cop event at Starbucks because of the importance to have a forum that includes police officers and public servants. For Mullins, it was important to make the community of all ages comfortable to ask questions in a safe environment.
“At Starbucks, we like to have a sense of community and really open our doors to anyone here. We wanted kids to come in and see the police officers are not scary people,” said Mullins. “Like you and me, they really are part of our community. When they go home at night, they go home to a family so we just really want to open our community and being more receptive of law enforcement and more events with volunteers and public servants in the area.”
Starbucks opened its doors at the Ocean Gateway location in June 2018. Starbucks is open Monday through Thursday from 4:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 4:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday 5 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday 5 a.m. to 9 p.m.