Officer Roger Gemoules normally spends his time as a Cahokia High School resource officer, but when the school is on spring break, he extends his duties to the community.
As he drove around Cahokia, Illinois, on April 17, he spotted a car sporting expired plates and pulled it over. The driver was 22-year-old Ka’Shawn Baldwin.
Not only were his plates expired, so was his license. It was shaping up to be a bad day for Baldwin until Officer Gemoules heard his story.
Baldwin knew he’d been taking a risk by venturing out without the proper licensing and license plates, but he was trying to get to a job interview and had no other way to get there.
Gemoules decided to help the young man out rather than set him back. He decided not to ticket Baldwin and instead drove him to the interview himself.
Baldwin told KSDK that he already worked at McDonald’s, but he was trying to pick up another gig with FedEx. Thanks to Gemoules, he got the job!
Francella Jackson is Mayor Curtis McCall Jr.’s assistant, and when she heard about this exemplary act of kindness, she had to share it with the world.
“Cahokia police officer Roger Gemoules pulled a vehicle over yesterday that had expired plates,” Jackson wrote on Facebook on April 18.
“The occupant of the car also did not have a valid driver’s license, etc.”
“He told Officer Gemoules that he had a job interview and didn’t have any way of getting there and that’s why he was driving illegally. Instead of issuing him a ticket, Officer Gemoules took him to his interview AND HE GOT THE JOB!”
“On behalf of Mayor Curtis McCall Jr., I would like to thank Officer Gemoules for showing compassion and being a great example of how community oriented policing actually works.”
“I am very proud of Officer [Gemoules] and the excellent decision-making and judgment he displayed in helping this young man,” the mayor said, according to WICS.
“‘Community Policing’ is something we strive for in Cahokia, because it is not always about writing tickets, or sending someone to jail. It is about helping people when we can and building relationships.”
“Job well done Officer [Gemoules] and congrats to the young man for getting the job!”
Baldwin hopes that this new opportunity will allow him to take care of some things (like renewing his license and plates) as well as plan for the future.
He would like to own his own home, and this is definitely a step in the right direction — thanks to a cop who decided to exercise mercy over justice.
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