A New Hampshire police officer who went to investigate a shoplifting incident ended up paying for the thief's items after he learned that they were going to be used to make a child's birthday cake.
During the week of Nov. 23, Portsmouth Officer Michael Kotsonis was dispatched to a store that had reported a woman stealing cake mix, Crisco, and a couple of frosting tubes, the Portsmouth Herald reports. Kotsonis investigated the incident and found out who the thief was. He then went to her house to retrieve the stolen items.
At the house, Kotsonis learned that the items were going to be used to make a birthday cake for the thief's child, and he decided to return to the store and buy the items for the woman himself.
"I'm not going to take away a kid's birthday cake," Kotsonis told the Herald on Dec. 1. "I ended up bringing it back to the mother."
He added that while he thinks the mother's actions were wrong, "the kid shouldn't have to pay."
Acting deputy police chief Frank Warchol said that Kotsonis' kindness and compassion toward the mother exemplifies the mission of the Portsmouth Police Department, according to the Associated Press.
One of the grocery store employees, who had alerted the Herald to the good deed, called it "the kindest thing in the entire world."
"He's a Portsmouth police officer and I literally have never had such an amazing experience with an officer and I'm hoping that he can get some sort of recognition," the employee wrote. The Portsmouth Police Department later tweeted their own praises for Kotsonis with a link to the Herald article, AP reports.
Warchol said that such good deeds are performed by Portsmouth police officers regularly, and he added that Kotsonis did not do it for attention.
"What you do when no one is looking, that's the character of someone," Kotsonis added to the Herald.