Coffee with a cop: Visiting with law enforcement

By Kim Fundingsland, Minot Daily News
Original article HERE

Law enforcement, community, conversation and coffee all came together for several hours Thursday. Coffee with a Cop was held at Starbucks on South Broadway in Minot from 9 a.m. until noon.

The casual event that got its start in 2011 in California has spread throughout the nation. The idea behind Coffee with a Cop is to allow citizens to interact with law enforcement in a relaxed and comfortable setting. There is no agenda or opening statements, but rather informal conversation about what matters to people.

“We’ve always had a pretty strong relationship with our community and law enforcement,” said Aaron Moss, Minot Police. “This just serves to reinforce that and build up what we already have.”

Police, sheriff’s officers, Highway Patrol and even Game and Fish personnel participate in the event. Uniformed law enforcement officers invited citizens to share tables and engage in conversation, all while enjoying a cup of coffee. It has proven to be popular with both citizens and law enforcement.

“We’ve been doing it for three or four years. We really enjoy it,” said Moss while pouring a cup of coffee for a new arrival at Starbucks. “The community seems to enjoy the interaction and we’ll continue to do it as long as it remains successful like this.”

Moss was asked to take a turn serving coffee at the drive-up window. He did so. Customers enjoyed the unexpected experience of having a uniformed police officer hand them their order. Minot Starbucks intends to host another Coffee with a Cop in October as part of a national promotion.