GOOD DRIVERS REWARDED WITH FREE PIZZA!
The Crestview Police Department’s Food From the Fuzz program will soon be rewarding good, safe driving practices with a certificate for a free Papa Murphy’s “FAVES” pizza. The program, which has not yet been implemented, has generated excitement and online discussion, not just in the community, but in social media posts from as far away as Seattle all the way to Maine.
While motorist participation in the program as originally envisioned was completely voluntary, to address some concerns the department had received, the CPD Community Services division is tweaking Food From the Fuzz so the agency will present the reward for good driving — a certificate good for a Papa Murphy’s FAVES pizza — without pulling the driver over.
“Programs like ours have been done by police departments all over the country without issue, and also in other countries,” Chief Tony Taylor said. “The program was developed purely to reward good driving. These courteous, civic-minded citizens make a significant, positive contribution to the safety of our community.”
Chief Taylor noted that some social media posts, overwhelmingly from out-of-town writers, perverted the program’s intent to appear as if the Police Department was finding a means to conduct vehicle searches for everything from illicit narcotics to smuggled aliens.
“There have been those who have posted irresponsible comments, trying to put a negative spin on a positive initiative,” the chief said. “It’s easy to jump on social media when there are no consequences for manufacturing conspiracy theories.
“There is absolutely no plan to violate anyone’s rights,” Chief Taylor continued. “Our intent is only to reward good driving. There is no hidden agenda or motive.”
Chief Taylor and members of his command staff noted many police interactions with local residents can result in negative consequences, such as a traffic citation or an arrest, but opportunities to reward good behavior are infrequent.
“While there are plenty of statutes to address wrongdoing, there’s no statute that let’s us reward citizens for doing good,” Chief Taylor said.
So if a motorist is observed driving well, the pizza will still be forthcoming, but not by being pulled over. The blue lights in the rearview mirror are reserved for bad drivers, Chief Taylor said.
“Fear not,” he said. “If you’re pulled over in Crestview, you will not be getting a free pizza. It’s because you’re driving poorly and you might get a ticket instead.”
Photo: Crestview Police Community Services officer Sam Kimmons stands for duty, honor, courage, integrity…and pizza! Under the new Food From the Fuzz program he initiated, motorists who are observed practicing good driving skills will be rewarded not with the Mini Murph pizza he is displaying, but a certificate for a full-sized Papa Murphy’s FAVES pizza.