Sergeant Scott Stafford climbs back up on the bench after falling into the water tank. The Dunk-a-Cop fundraiser's goal was to give back to the community and create dialogue with students. Patrick Calvert // DN
Dunk-a-Cop fundraiser familiarizes students with UPD
The University Police Department kicked off the school year with the fourth annual Dunk-a-Cop fundraiser near the Scramble Light on Thursday.
Students and other members of the community could pay $1 to throw three balls at the target or $5 to automatically dunk an officer into the water tank. All proceeds go to Riley Children’s Hospital.
“We just wanted to kind of get back and give back to the community as much as we possibly could,” said Capt. Kent Kurtz, a police officer for UPD.
The event also gives the police department a chance to meet students so they can build a familiarity with the campus police force.
“It allows the students who just came here to kind of meet the cops and realize that we do other things besides just being out there, writing tickets and things of that nature,” he said.
The fundraiser for Riley Children's Hospital and the one-on-one interactions with students on campus were some of the major takeaways of the event, but another practical function of the event was bike registrations.
“We actually do find a number of bikes, but if we don’t have a serial number or anything like that we can’t return it back to the individual because we don’t know who it belongs to,” Kurtz said.
Students who registered their bikes at the Dunk-a-Cop fundraiser have a much higher chance of getting a missing bike back because the police department will already have their name, serial number and all the identifiers needed to differentiate the bike from the “bikes throughout the years that people don’t register.”
Students who took part in the fundraiser, like the police, thought the event was worthwhile.
Ashley Music, freshman biology major, said that it was a fun way to raise money for charity while getting to know the campus police.
“I think its good to see them in a positive light because they protect us,” Music said. “They are there to help us.”
Chris Martin, a junior exercise science major, said the police “are human beings too” and thought the event helped portray that.
“I think its fun to get the police out in the community to show that they aren’t the bad guys… its just having fun, I’m all for it,” he said. “Don’t let one bad apple ruin it for the bunch.”
UPD raised $700 for Riley Children's Hospital.