Brittney Lofthouse – Staff Writer

Nearly doubling last year’s proceeds, the annual Tip-A-Cop fundraiser raised $7,000 for the county’s Shop with a Cop program at Motor Company Grill. The third annual event is a joint endeavor of the Macon County Sheriff’s Office, Franklin Police Department, and Highlands Police Department. This year, members of the local band Sinners and Saints also volunteered their time to provide entertainment for the crowd.

The success of this year’s Tip-A-Cop event will allow 70 children to participate in the Shop with a Cop program. Last year, the Christmas program served more than 400 children who were granted a holiday surprise when local law enforcement, emergency personnel and community leaders picked them up and took them shopping for the day.

The support from the community allows each child to be given a $100 gift card to Walmart to be spent as they wish with the one stipulation that they buy one gift for someone else. In addition, each child is treated to lunch at several different restaurants in town who donate meals to the program.

One of the highlights of this year’s fundraiser came when three-year-old Kaius put Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland to work. Kaius, who attended the event with his grandparents, asked Sheriff Holland to help him retrieve something heavy from his vehicle. When Holland got to the car, he found a jar full of pennies too heavy for Kaius to carry himself. Kaius told the Sheriff he wanted to donated the pennies for the other little kids and to help those in need.