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Police officer buys groceries for family in need

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AUSTIN, Texas (FOX News) — An Austin police officer is being recognized for going beyond the call of duty.

Officer James Riley was on patrol in West Austin when a citizen flagged him down and told him a young boy was walking alone in a parking lot.

Officer Riley was on patrol in the Baker Sector of Austin last week – when he came across a 9-year-old boy near the 7-Eleven parking lot. At first, he thought the boy could be in trouble but after talking with him he realized…

“He came down to get some snacks for him and his brother. And I said ok,” Ofc. Riley said.

Out of concern for the young boy’s safety he offered to give him a ride home. And once Ofc. Riley was in the boy’s home…

“I had noticed well remembered he wanted some snacks and I’m thinking to myself I will show them how to get their own snacks out of the pantry here,” he said.

The family was financially strapped.

“So, I looked and there wasn’t very much for someone their age to make. I mean even someone my age would have had trouble cooking up a snack or a meal and that’s why he went to the store,” he said.

What Officer Riley did next – went beyond the call of duty. He drove to a nearby grocery store and bought a cart full of food for the family.

“I called my sergeant and let him know what I’m doing and he said, ‘head over there and count me in for $20.’ I ran into Officer Hobbs, told him what I was doing. I mean, I’m in uniform with a grocery cart and he’s like, ‘here’s another $20.’ So, I went through and got things kids like to eat.” 

Since then, his act of kindness has spread throughout social media.

“I was doing what anybody else would probably do,” he said.

Officer riley says situations like this remind him why he got into this line of work.

“You care about people.”

And says had he turned a blind eye, “I would of still be regretting it today. It would have been eating me alive.”

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