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Officers are, once again, spreading the warmth this winter as the Madison Police Department kicks off the sixth annual "We've Gotcha Covered" campaign. They have been armed with hundreds of hats, gloves and mittens thanks to continued generosity of parishioners at Door Creek Church, 6602 Dominion Drive.

The cold weather gear will be kept in squad car trunks, and distributed to those in need throughout the community.

Each year, the program generates many heartwarming stories. A MPD sergeant shares one from last winter:

"In February, while I was working patrol, I stopped to assist a motorist who had run into a snow bank with his vehicle at Fordem & Johnson. The snow storm had gone all night and it was very cold and crews were cleaning up still. The driver was out of his vehicle trying to dig his car out of the snow bank that he was stuck in. He had no gloves or hat on, and he was using the end of a window scraper to try to dig himself out. This was not working well. He told me he'd been working all night and was on his way home from when he cut the corner too close. I went to the trunk of my squad and tried to find anything to help dig him out, after I asked if he wanted a tow and he asked if there was any way to avoid it because he didn't have the money.

I found a plastic baggie with large gloves and a hat in my squad trunk. I gave them to him and he didn't know what to say, but he put them on because his hands were red from cold. He and I were able to dig out the car, and then push it from the snow bank. His car was older. He offered me the gloves back after we got his vehicle onto the side street and I told him no, they were his to keep. He almost cried. He thanked me very sincerely.

I say thank you to all of you who made that moment possible, by bagging the gloves, by giving the gloves and hat, and by believing that officers will use them in situation just like this, that make a real difference."

Besides placing donated items in squad car trunks, officer will also be delivering some to not-for-profit agencies whose clients are in need of a helping hand this holiday season.

The program is managed by the department's Crime Prevention officer, Frank Chandler.


  • Officer Frank Chandler, 266-4238
  • Joel DeSpain, 266-4897