Much to his surprise, a photo of a Connecticut police officer has recently gone viral.
Michael Castillo, a 27-year-old police officer, responded to a report of a fight that had broken out outside of a local Target. Castillo noted that, when he reached the store, he saw a group of boys he recognized from the area.
In an interview with ABC News, Castillo stated, “I asked if they were fighting and they said, ‘No, we’re just playing . . . we’re all friends.”
While he was talking to the group, Castillo noticed that the chain on one of the boys’ bikes was twisted. “I fixed the chain and tightened up the tire and told them, ‘Alright guys, go play somewhere else besides the Target parking lot.’ They’re good kids.”
Castillo had no idea that a passerby captured the moment on camera and posted it to the police department’s Facebook page.
The passerby, Faith Taylor, wrote in the picture caption, “Not sure what officer this is, but it’s nice to see an officer in a good and kind way. This guy takes ‘to serve and protect’ to heart.”
Taylor stated, “I was hoping he’d get acknowledgement for it because how often does that happen. Everyone is willing to take a picture when a cop messes up, but that does not seems as prevalent when they do good.”
“It was an amazing community police effort to show kids that they matter, that you can trust the police and ask them for help and that is what they’re there for,” Taylor also said.
As for Castillo, he was not aware of the photo until family and colleagues told him about the viral Facebook post.
“I didn’t expect this. I just saw the kids; they needed some help; I helped the kids.”
“It was something small to me. It’s not the first time I’ve ever done something like this, and it definitely won’t be the last.”