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Fifth annual Shop with Cop program held in New Hartford

By GARY LIBERATORE

NEW HARTFORD, N.Y. (WKTV) - The Christmas season can be tough on many families here in Central New York, but some local police officers continue to make it a little bit better for some of them.

The 5th annual 'Shop with a Cop' program was held at the Target store in New Hartford on Saturday.

Members of the Thomas M. Lindsey Foundation raise money all year to give as many kids as they can, $100 giftcards, so the youngsters can buy something for themselves or for family members.

This year, enough money was raised to give out giftcards to 130 local youngsters.

Utica Police Officer Thomas Lindsey was gunned down while conducting a traffic stop on Neilson St. in Utica on April 12, 2007.

Utica Police Investigator James Laurey was onhand Saturday and says Tom Lindsey loved kids and would have loved to have seen the smiles on not only the kids' faces, but heir parents as well, "There's a couple families who, it was really going to be a rough Christmas for them, and when they got the letter they were just touched.  I know I received a few phone calls that people were just in tears."

The Thomas M. Lindsey foundation asked area schools and community centers to give them the names and addresses of kids in need, and the foundation tries to help as many as possible.

Money for the Shop with a Cop program is raised through two big Thomas M. Lindsey Foundation fundraisers during the summer, the Brothers Forever Ride and The Thomas M. Lindsey Memorial Golf Tournament.

Nicole Jones, a parent of two young kids in Utica says this event really has made her kids Christmas extra special, "I don't know how my kids got picked, I don't know how, because I don't know nothing about this, this is the first time I heard  about this, and when I got the letter in the mail it was a blessing."

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