ELKINS, W.Va. (WBOY) — The Randolph County Sheriff’s Office has found a creative way to build rapport with the youth of the community.
You most likely had collector cards of some sort throughout your childhood, and if you can remember the significance it held on you at the time, then imagine the thrill of students in Randolph County.
The idea of law enforcement trading cards came about from a deputy of the Randolph County Sheriff’s Department who then mentioned it to fellow PROs and sheriff, Robert Elbon Jr. After finding the funding for the project, the department utilized a local photographer and printing company to create the trading cards.
A full set has a total of 18 cards, with the current fan-favorite being K-9 Officer, Twix.
Statistics about each officer can even be found on the back of each card, providing students with details like the educational and military backgrounds of each officer, what academy class they graduated from, and how many years they’ve served in law enforcement.
12 News spoke with Randolph County Corporal, Ethan Carr on the importance of building relationships with students in the area.
“The idea behind it is those kids are now comfortable knowing an officer, they may have that card, that if these officers come out to their residence of an evening, for whatever reason that may be, they may be comfortable with that officer. If they have to disclose anything or just the comfort of having someone they know in a stressful situation I think is an amazing thing,” said Corporal Carr.
Sheriff Robert Elbon Jr. said students are taking a liking to the project.
“We have fun with it. Sometimes we tell the kids we want them to floss or do something to get a card and it’s just basically to gain rapport with them and make them laugh and they love that, so it’s went really well. We were at the Elkins football game the other night, and I had to go back to the car to get more cards because I gave out everything I had, so it’s been well received,” said Sheriff Elbon.
The Randolph County Sheriff’s Department is even offering a special prize for students who do manage to collect a full set. Each Randolph County deputy has their own card on them, so if you see one out, don’t be afraid to approach them and ask for their trading card.