LeBlanc’s Food Stores offers helping hand to police _lowres

Photo provided by Brooke Knight -- LeBlanc’s Food Stores in Zachary donated $500 to the Zachary Police Reserve Officer program Feb. 12 to assist with the purchase of uniforms. Gathered, from left, are Reserve officers David Hughes and Dennis Flurry, Chief David McDavid, LeBlanc’s Zone Manager Justin Doll, LeBlanc’s Store Manager Randy Ashford, Assistant Chief Darryl Lawrence and Reserve officer Bryan Holiday.

LeBlanc’s Food Stores recently made a $500 donation to the Zachary Police Department’s reserve officer program to assist with the purchase of police uniforms.

According to Chief David McDavid, each reserve is required to go through the same physical and psychological testing as full-time police officers and are trained in firearms and defensive tactics alongside uniform patrol officers.

McDavid said reserve officers are required to put in 18 hours a month and receive a $120 quarterly stipend for their time.

“They are a vital part of the Police Department and provide security at most community and school events,” McDavid said.

Fifteen officers are on the reserves’ roster, and in 2014, they put in a combined 2,500 hours for the department.

“They all have full-time jobs and basically volunteer their time,” McDavid said. “Because reserves are not considered full-time employees, the department is unable to provide them with uniforms and equipment essential to performing some of their duties.”

Most of the equipment is purchased by the officers themselves, the chief said.

Brooke Knight, director of corporate communications for LeBlanc’s, said the local grocer is honored to assist the ZPD by helping fund the uniforms.

“On behalf of LeBlanc’s Food Stores, we thank the officers and reserve officers of the Zachary Police Department for their service to the community,” Knight said.