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This cop went above and beyond to help a black teenager

by / May 10, 2014 Black News 26 Comments

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Reported By Liku Zelleke

Sumter, S.C.: Christmas might still be a long time off, but 13-year-old Cameron Simmons must have done something right because his presents arrived early this year.

A few weeks ago Simmons called the Sumter police because he was upset after getting into a fight with his mother. When Officer Gaetano Acerra met him after responding to the call, the teenager told him that he did not want to live in the house with his family anymore.

Officer Acerra said that he gave him some fatherly advice. “I said, ‘You have it good, you have a roof over your head.’ I told him I would try to help him out, and here we are now.”

But it was only after the officer brought him home that he realized that maybe having the roof wasn’t enough. Once inside he saw that the boy didn’t even have a real bed or anything, for that matter, that should normally be found in a bedroom.

“My heart went out for him. I thought the little things that he needed I could give him, to make him a happier kid,” the officer said.

He did act on his vow. A few weeks later, he was back at Simmons’ house with a truck laden with gifts. According to Officer Acerra, he had managed to bring the boy “a bed, TV, desk, chair and a Wii game system that somebody donated to me because of the story I told them.”

He also has plans to add more furniture like a dresser and mirror.

Before his new bed, Simmons had been sleeping on an inflatable mattress that would slowly deflate throughout the night. Now, the boy said, thanks to his new bed his back wouldn’t hurt anymore.

Officer Acerra said, “I didn’t do this for publicity or to get people to notice me. I did it because I could. It was the right thing to do and I think people should do things like this.”

He also said that apart from the pats-on- the-back, he has gained a precious thing: a friend. He has given Simmons his cell phone number and told him to call him any time.

James

26 Comment

  1. I wish there were more people like this.

  2. That was very nice what the officer did to help out the kid.He will never forget it.

  3. That was very nice what the officer did to help out the kid.He will never forget it.

  4. This is a happy and sad story. First, you should not have children you cannot afford. How many other children are in the home and why did this child feel so desperate he called the police himself? Where is the FATHER or did MOM lay down with a person without benefit of marriage. The actions of the African-American adults have caused this child to feel hopeless and in constant need of material, emotional and spiritual things. This is why I am so against girls having babies out of wedlock and for men who cannot and will not support them or the child. I am sick and tired of seeing our children grow up and constantly have to look to "caucausian folk" or the system to help them out…we should not be a race of beggars, it is time for this to stop. A 15 year old with no bed, mom, you should know better…shame on you. Where is the extended family, ever heard of box springs and mattress at least? I applaud the young officer, but, this story makes me so mad with African-Americans.

  5. This is a happy and sad story. First, you should not have children you cannot afford. How many other children are in the home and why did this child feel so desperate he called the police himself? Where is the FATHER or did MOM lay down with a person without benefit of marriage. The actions of the African-American adults have caused this child to feel hopeless and in constant need of material, emotional and spiritual things. This is why I am so against girls having babies out of wedlock and for men who cannot and will not support them or the child. I am sick and tired of seeing our children grow up and constantly have to look to "caucausian folk" or the system to help them out…we should not be a race of beggars, it is time for this to stop. A 15 year old with no bed, mom, you should know better…shame on you. Where is the extended family, ever heard of box springs and mattress at least? I applaud the young officer, but, this story makes me so mad with African-Americans.

  6. Priceless! Officer Acerra is a perfect example of a man, a public servant, role model, and hero! Thank you for being a wonderful human being, and part of the solution, and not part of the problem.

  7. There are plenty of people like this, but unfortunately most of them are also living in poverty and cannot afford to do things like this.

    You will find more people who are also poor willing to help out others who are poor than those in the middle and upper class.

    If this was the opposite, there would not be as many people living in poverty or children with these kinds of problems.

    • Mr. Thomas,

      Police Officers in South Carolina are not rich. You seem to miss the point here. Officer Acerra gave what he had, but because of the charity in his heart was able to move others to give. This has nothing to do whether you are rich or poor, but whether you have love for your neighbor in your heart.

  8. Don't get mad, get busy making a difference! We are the change we are seeking! Blame and shame create more of the same! The community is the extended family! Every story is not stereotypical, there are multiple causes that create a multitude of problems.

  9. You said all that not knowing WHY his parent(s) were not able to provide some things that makes life a little easier.

  10. Thank you Officer Acerra. May God Bless you. Some people talk, and other Do.. You did and I believe God will Bless you and your family for your unselfishness.

  11. THAT WAS JUST A GREAT BLESSING FROM GOD.ALL POLICEMEN ,ARE NOT BAD.THERE IS GOOD AND BAD IN EVERY RACE OF PEOPLE.MAY GOD BLESS YOU,THAT HE WILL Continuous TO USE YOU TO HELP OTHER.EVERY ONE HAS A GIFT,YOU JUST GOT TO KNOW WHERE TO USE IT AT. BE BLESS

  12. This officer generated some good will and good karma.

  13. This was a very nice gesture by the (unique) cop , it would be really nice if more children like this one had a father at home not a daddy ,but a real father. a big Kudos to the police officer because this is RARE…

  14. Here we go let's start judging because its an African American kid you're label this race. Why come up with a negative comment for something positive?

  15. Stories like this are truly inspiring.

  16. Tears…thanks Officer Acerra God bless you young man:)

  17. Bettie,you must have commented on the wrong story because I see nothing but positive comments here.No one is judging or labeling here.

  18. Marvin read the comment from Elizabeth Moore.
    .

  19. Officer Acerra, NAMASTE: “I Honor The Light Within You.”

  20. It takes a village to raise a child if their no one around to help raise a child. Just so happen that an caucasian happen to be at the right place at the right time. Now this could be a divorce mother who is out of a job or other circumstance beyond her control. Sometime we need to get all the facts before making judgement.

  21. this is very touching its actually god still present in people in the police department this heals me from the demonic police officers who take the badge in bring personal problems on the job domestic and psychologically and hurt others who are seeking justice and or are mentally ill or addicted to substances or mentally slow yet or just a common law abiding person in need of help.

  22. SO YOU CAN SEE IS THAT NOT ALL POLICEMEN ARE BAD,MAY GOD BLESS HIM AND ALSO THE 13 YEAR OLD CAMERON <3

  23. my dad was a cop like this, once told him of a woman w a new baby, with nothing, him and mom told me get in his truck, went to the stores and bought her everything they needed, then told me give em to her, they never met her

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