Las Vegas community gathers for officer appreciation event

An officer lifts a child up into a police vehicle (FOX5).

Hundreds crowded Police Memorial Park Saturday to show their appreciation for law enforcement. It's an event that helps local officers and community members get to know each other.

"Anytime we have a tragedy that happens in our community, they wanna be able to connect with law enforcement as well, and this is an opportunity for them to come out and say thank you, to shake hands and really connect with us on a personal level,” said Metro officer Brent Garcia.

“It’s nice to see the community showing their support for the law enforcement community here and everything that happened on October 1st.," resident Nicholas Mapes said.

More than three months after 1 October, the community is seeing the personal side of our first responders.

“Often times folks only have negative interactions with our law enforcement personnel and we want them to come out and see that you know we're regular people too. We have families, we have our own personal interests, and this is somewhere you can see that,” Officer Garcia said.

People were able to meet officers, check out their vehicles, even just eat and hang out with them.

“It's just a great way to connect with people and to be actually on the ground shaking hands talking to people about what’s going on in the valley and people love it,” President of the nonprofit Friends of Metro Mounted Unit Kelly Korb said.

“I was on the other side of the fence one day and I didn't like these guys, but now I see what they are here for and they are really here for us for our safety,” Tavaris Moss said.

Tavaris and Miyoko Moss brought their five kids to the event. They wanted to show them, from an early age, that officers do many things for our community.

“They look out for us, they're here to protect us, you know we can call them for anything. They're here to help us every step of the way,” Miyoko Moss said.

“It's great to have friends and family out here so we really appreciate that,” Officer Garcia said.

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