Instead of a stint in prison, a suspected Canadian shoplifter landed a job after a police officer stepped in to help.
Constable Niran Jeyanesan recalls arriving at Walmart bewildered by the reported theft, reports TPS News.
It turns out the suspect, who was 18 years old, was trying to steal a dress shirt, a tie and socks, the BBC reports.
"These are not usual items for someone to steal, so I was intrigued by it," Jeyanesan said. "He was apprehensive to talk about it, at first, but he began to open up."
When Jeyanesan questioned the young man further, he was moved by what he heard. He learned the young man's father was sick and he wanted to earn extra money to help.
"This young person has been facing his own difficulties in life and he was looking to straighten out all that by providing for his family and trying to get a job," Jeyanesan said.
"He was a well-spoken kid," he added. "He had made mistakes. He was very remorseful for his actions that day."
After hearing the young man's story, Jeyanesan knew just what he had to do.
Instead of handcuffing the young man, Jeyanesan bought the interview outfit for him.
"As police officers, we want to solve the problem," he said. "In many cases, charging someone is the best way to solve the problem. Sometimes, it’s not the best solution."
A few days later, the young man called the officer with good news: He got the job.
"He is starting Monday," Jeyanesan said. "He told me he actually wore the shirt and the tie -- I'm just so happy!"
Jeyanesan went a step further and also decided to help the young man's father out.
“We were able to get his father a job as well through some friends who were willing to help out,” he said, CP 24 reports.
Toronto Police's Staff Sgt. Paul Bois was proud of Jeyanesan's actions.
"Arresting [the young man] wouldn't have been in the best interests of anyone," he said. "I reacted very positively to the news; all issues were resolved by the action the officer took. It reiterates our goal of being positive role models in the community."
Jeyanesan has since captured international attention for his good deed, but is surprised by the recognition.
"I was surprised it was recognized because it’s such a small thing," he said. "It was a chance to do something positive and all the detectives and my superiors were glad I did it."