Note: we are republishing this story in light of recent reports across the country that suggest more and more Americans are having positive interactions with police officers despite changing attitudes about police departments and wider conversation about police reform.
A heartwarming moment between a Texas City officer and a man he arrested 8 years earlier was caught on camera and is going viral on social media.
Senior Patrolman Salvador "Sal" Chapa stated that he had been at a barbecue cook off when a man walked over to him without warning and said “thank you.” The man then asked to pray with the officer.
Chapa stated that he had arrested the man, whom he identified as Doc Amey, eight years ago on a gun charge. Amey was convicted and sentenced to prison for the crime.
While in prison, Amey reportedly sought help from God and the Bible to change his life. Following his release, he went to college and kept on studying the Bible.
Chapa stated that he’d seen Amey around town a couple of times, but that the recent violent attacks against officers was what prompted Amey to reconnect with him.
Chapa stated that Amey led him away from the crowd, and together they prayed for officers' safety. Another man at the barbecue snapped a photo of the moment between the two men and posted it online.
His caption read in part: "We should be seeing more of this in America. There shouldn't be race involved and this is living proof that color doesn't matter. This is a prime example. All lives matter ONE NATION UNDER GOD! prayers to your brother and I pray for you. Continue of your path brother thank you for saying a prayer for my brother."
The post was shared over 10,000 times on Facebook.
Chapa expressed his gratitude for Amey’s actions and people’s reaction to the photograph.
"After seeing the picture getting posted and all, I was overwhelmed but at the same time I was happy it happened. I hope whoever views it looks at police in a different aspect. We're here to help everybody," he said.
Sources: ABC 13