Police officers and citizens have fun chasing and eluding each other.
The annual Cops and Joggers fundraiser beach 5K run and walk, which was held on Saturday, July 16, at Andy Romano Park, is the only time the Ormond Beach Police Department enjoys arresting its community. And yes, they definitely enjoy it.
The first 300 runners will receive a flag football belt to wear during the race, and Ormond Police officers gather along the course and try to remove as many flags from runners as possible. After the race, runners with at least one remaining flag will receive an “I outran the Ormond Police Department” shirt, while those with no flags remaining will receive an “I got busted by the Ormond Beach Police Department” shirt.
“We took it very serious this year,” said Officer John Dovine. “Last year, too many people got away from us. So this year, we came back and fought hard. The goal was 200 flags.” The officers may have gotten close to that goal.
The event raises funds for community programs put on by the OBPD, and it helps to build a friendly connection with the officers and the local citizens.
During the race, not only do the officers take it seriously, but the “criminals” will do nearly anything to reach the finish line with a flag. Ormond Local Lynda Latulip put one officer in the headlock and attempted to take him down to prevent her flags from being snatched. Others may run into the ocean or as far out of bounds as possible.
“It’s vital to have an open relationship with the community,” said Jesse Godfrey, OBPD police chief. “It does nothing but bring about positive things.”
To view more photos, click here: http://www.ormondbeachobserver.com/photo-gallery/photo-gallery-cops-n-joggers
5K Top local finishers
Male: Jeremy Ragon, first overall; Preston Walsh, third; Joe Halpin, fourth, Paul Palmer, 12th; Chris Staley, 14th; Scott Jenkins, 25th; Female: Monica Tucker, 22nd; Jessica Lipsey, 19th.
Say what? “Last year too many got away from us. So this year, we came back and fought hard. The goal was 200 flags.”
John Dovine, Ormond Beach Police Officer