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California Cops Hand Out Cash to Drivers, Instead of Tickets

Getting a ticket around the winter holidays is no fun, even if you know you’re in the wrong. For 50 drivers in California’s Madera County, getting pulled over turned out to be a real treat on Christmas Day.
California deputies hand out cash instead of tickets to drivers pulled over for minor offenses 38 photos
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That’s because deputies handed them actual cash instead of tickets. Each driver pulled over for minor offenses, which included anything from a busted taillight to expired registration on the vehicle, didn’t get a ticket or a summons, but a $100 bill, tucked away nicely in a card from the Madera County Sheriff's Department and local business Agriland Farming Company.

This sounds like a good joke, but it’s actually a tradition with the Department. In fact, this is the fifth consecutive year they’re doing this, as part of what they like to call Operation Random Acts of Kindness. They got the money from the local business as a donation, and they set out to give it away in a day’s work, ABC News reports.

“The biggest thing is, you're going to have to be active to find enough folks to give away $5,000 in 4-5 hours,” Sheriff Jay Varney told his staff before they hit the road.

They were eventually able to give all the money away. Videos from the deputies’ bodycams were uploaded to Facebook, along with an explanation on how this operation is meant to help the Department. Apparently, this is part of a strategy to build trust between the community and the police.

“Deputies primarily have contact with citizens when something stressful or bad is happening,” Sheriff Jay Varney explains. “This annual giving event allows deputies an opportunity to interact with the public in a positive manner and spread some holiday cheer.”

As some of the drivers were sure to let the deputies know, this was, indeed, a great way to spread the holiday cheer. After all, when you see the police lights flashing behind you and you’re pulling over, getting free cash is the last thing on your mind. This year, for those 50 drivers, Santa ditched the red outfit and wore the Madera County Sheriff's Department uniform.





 
 
 
 
 

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