Cop Gets a Call from 13-Year-Old's Mother; Family Amazed After Seeing What He Pulled up With


An Atlanta police officer went beyond the call of duty to save one struggling family’s Christmas after he received a call for help.

Officer Che Milton got a call in December 2017 from 13-year-old Erika Gibbons’ mother, WSB-TV reported.

Gibbons couldn’t afford to get a Christmas gift for her daughter, and Milton wanted to do something special for the straight-A student.

“I happened to answer the phone and say, ‘Hey, we’ve got to do something,'” Milton told WSB.

Milton asked his fellow officers and the rest of his community for help, and they fulfilled Erika’s Christmas gift wishes, including a tablet and cash.

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“It’s part of what we do,” Milton said. “We wear many hats as police officers, so we are just trying to help.”

One woman from the community responded to Milton’s Facebook post and gave Erika and her family a gift in person.

“She drove two hours to give the mom a $100 gift card. A church donated as well,” Milton told WSB.

Journalist Lauren Pozen tweeted photos of Milton with the family after he had given out the gifts.

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Erika was overwhelmed by the generosity of her community and said it was a Christmas she would never forget.

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“For everybody to just come together and help me and my family out with amazing gifts and cards and stuff, it really does feel wonderful,” she told WSB.

“I just want to say I love you and thank you for everything you have given me.”

In 2019, Milton was placed on administrative duty during an Atlanta Police Department internal investigation into accusations he used excessive force while reportedly trying to remove a man from a bar, according to WXIA-TV. It isn’t clear whether he is on active duty again.

However, there are many more examples of Milton helping families in need, as when he caught a 12-year-old girl shoplifting shoes for her sister in 2017.

When he found the girl’s family in need, he bought food and beverages for the family and contacted a social worker to try to help improve their living situation, WSB reported.

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith