One officer’s commitment to “serve and protect” took on a life of its own this weekend in La Plata, Maryland. After learning of a toy-stealing culprit in the neighborhood, La Plata PD officer Robert Bagley went on an overnight mission to recover and return the beloved items to a local girl.
The girl’s father, Jason Hendricks, posted surveillance video to his Facebook page on Sunday showing his daughter’s dragon and dinosaur being taken from their front porch. As local residents began commenting, a friend of the family called on Officer Bagley for help.
“I’m on it,” Bagley responded in the comments.
And that he was. After taking a closer look at the video footage Hendricks provided, Officer Bagley recognized the alleged toy theft and knew what areas she is known to frequent. Although he didn’t find the woman, he was able to recover the dragon toy sitting on a curb.
It was approximately 2 a.m. at this point, so rather than disturbing the Hendricks family, Bagley decided to have a little fun. And thus began the adventure around La Plata.
First up, a visit to the emergency room to fix the dragon’s broken arm. After a quick wrap and picture with the hospital staff, Bagley and the dragon were off to find the other toy.
“The idea just kind of popped in my head to do this story for the girl,” Bagley told NBC Washington. “Give her something to look at in the morning and kind of cheer her up a little bit.”
Bagley took pictures throughout the night on some routes and areas he was checking, creating a hilarious string of events that definitely made up for the dino’s unfortunate luck. Photos included a stop to the gym to strengthen dragon’s arm, getting deputized as a Junior La Plata officer, writing tickets and eating donuts.
Hendricks followed up on his Facebook post, letting Bagley and followers know how excited Evie would be to get her dragon back. He added, “We appreciate your creativity and compassion. We are very lucky to live in such a wonderful caring community.”