KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- Through the end of the week, customers of a Kansas City, Kan., coffee shop can pay it forward to their police department.
Jessi Rose Johnson, manager of A Cup on the Hill, 730 Minnesota Ave., says many of their regular customers work down at Kansas City, Kan., Police Dept. Headquarters.
When Kansas City, Kan., Det. Brad Lancaster was killed by a gunman in May, followed by Kansas City, Kan., police Capt. Melton's murder this month, they knew they wanted to do something to support police officers they see frequently.
"We went through this with Det. Lancaster, and the feeling of helplessness, 'What can I do?', and sometimes condolences, spoken words, they only go so far, and you want to act, you want to do something, show an act of kindness of appreciation. So this is a concrete way with a real gift," said Johnson.
She said the coffee shop launched the 'Pay It Forward' program last week at the news of Capt. Melton's death.
Customers can leave donations in a glass jar and the money is then used to pay for a police officer's coffee purchase.
"Surprise, disbelief and sometimes a hesitancy to accept the gift," Johnson said, describing the reaction when they tell officers there will be 'no charge.'
She says dozens of officers, administrative staff, detectives, and those from special units come to the coffee shop and all of them have been getting free coffee.
"Basically anybody that we see with a police badge or a police uniform or an outfit of any kind, We don't take their money. We won't let them give us their money," Johnson said.
The coffee shop will continue to collect donations through Friday and for as long as the funds last, police and other staff will continue to get coffee free of charge.