HEPHZIBAH, Ga. (WJBF) —- A video of a Richmond County Sheriff’s Office deputy playing basketball with a group of kids is going viral on Facebook.
Deputy Britney Jones was doing a routine patrol in Hephzibah. That’s when she saw some neighborhood kids playing basketball. What she did next gave those kids a surprise and an experience they will never forget.
Jones says seeing the kids outside playing, was the perfect chance to spread positivity.
“I hoped out of the car, and I said I bet none of yall can beat me,” said Jones. “They said who up first, I was like oh-oh, they ready.”
That’s when Jones says the challenge began.
“One kid jumped up and said me! He checked me up, and I was like maybe this wasn’t a good idea,” explained Jones.
One of the kids told NewsChannel 6 reporter Devin Johnson, he and friends where shocked jones joined in their game.
“I thought my friend got in trouble because he just ran across the street right in front of her,” said Devonta Downing. “I was shocked when she was playing basketball. I was like wow and we were so shocked; we were smiling and running around.”
Downing says playing ball with Deputy Jones was fun, but it also cured his fear of the police.
“It makes the community look good, and it shows that cops do care about us kids,” said Jones. “It shows that they don’t want us being around the streets, but just having fun and away from gang violence.”
The deputy says they beat her, but she was grateful for the kids letting her join in their game.
“I just wanted to take them for being out there for practicing on their craft,” said Jones. “Not being out on the streets what some other kids in the area are doing.”
What the video doesn’t show is jones coming back with snacks and words of wisdom.
“She said to stay off the streets, keep doing what you’re doing, and stay amazing,” explained Downing.
“Whatever I can say to make someone’s day better, I more than willing to open my mouth,” explained Jones.
Photojournalist: Mark Gaskins