A police officer in south Florida was so moved by the plight of a struggling single mother who was caught shoplifting that she helped her out.
Miami-Dade Police Officer Vicki Thomas purchased $100 in groceries for Jessica Robles, who admitted she made a decision to shoplift groceries out of desperation.
"I asked her, 'Why would you do that? What would make you do that?' " said Thomas, the officer who stopped Robles. "And she said, 'My children are hungry."
Robles said she found herself in a situation where she looked at her the children, 12-year-old Anais and two younger boys, and realized she had no money left for food.
"Not fun, to see my brother in the dirt hungry, asking for food, and we have to tell him, 'There is nothing here,' " Anais told WSVN, fighting back tears as she recalled how she had to tell her little brothers, ages 2 and 6, that they were out of food.
Instead of taking Robles into custody, Thomas ran her criminal history and found nothing major. The officer saw Robles was not a habitual shoplifter, so she charged her with a misdemeanor and a notice to appear in court.
Thomas also took an extra step to help Robles and her children. "I made the decision to buy her some groceries because arresting her wasn't going to solve the problem with her children being hungry," she said.
"She asked, 'Do you even have food at the house?' And I looked at her in her face, and I told her, 'Not at all.'" Robles said.
"So I went in and bought her some groceries," Thomas said.