Pierce Twp. starts ‘golden ticket’ program for society’s do-gooders

Pictured is Rylan Clark, age 2, of New Richmond, who appeared in the National Down Syndrome Society's annual Times Square video presentation on Sept. 16, 2017. Provided photo.

Matt Murphy and Sadie LaRocque, pictured, were the first people issued a golden ticket for informing police about suspicious teen activity around a car. Provided photo.

By Brett Milam

The Pierce Township Police Department started its “Golden Ticket” program on Sept. 13 to reward citizens doing good things.

Chief Jeff Bachman said in a news release that police want to be on the lookout for those doing the “right thing.”

“As police officers, we’re taught from the first day of the police academy to always be on the lookout for criminal activity; people doing the ‘wrong thing,'” he said. “But what if we were also on the lookout for people doing the ‘right thing.'” How great would that be to acknowledge people doing good things and being rewarded for that behavior!”

Bachman said the police department approached Walmart about the idea and they were in agreement and partnered with the department to give them a grant for the program.

“When we had the Golden Tickets printed at Cincinnati Print Solutions, the owner, Mark Johnson, thought it was a great idea and printed the tickets at their expense,” Bachman said.

The next time a police officer approaches a citizen, it “just might be to say thank you for doing the ‘right thing,'” Bachman said.

“You won’t get to tour the Wonka Chocolate Factory with our Golden Ticket, but there will be a $10.00 Walmart gift card attached to it,” he said.

Within five days of the programs start on Sept. 18, the first two golden tickets were given out. The golden tickets were given to Matt Murphy and Sadie LaRocque, according to the department’s Facebook page.

The two were “cited” by police for their actions after witnessing a group of teens acting suspicious around a car in the parking lot of Pierce Point movie theater, police said.

“Both citizens stayed after their movie to make contact with the vehicle owner,” police said. “They also wrote down the license plate number and gave a good description of the teens to our officers who were responding to investigate.”

Robert Wells was given a golden ticket as well for helping a teen whose car had broken down after dark, police said.

“Mr. Wells help the stranded driver figure out what the problem was, drove to his home to get equipment he needed to help the disabled driver,” police said. “He then helped the driver get his vehicle started and get back on the road.”