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WATCH: Video of Temple police officer playing football with local children goes viral

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Posted at 5:58 PM, May 07, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-07 18:58:11-04

TEMPLE, Texas — "If I see kids out playing, I am on the same level mentally, so I like to get out and play with the kids — rough-house a little bit," said Temple Police Department officer, James Johnson.

"It's just a part of who I am."

A tenant at Canyon Creek Townhomes took a video of Officer Johnson playing with local children, and it's now going viral on social media.

The video shows Officer Johnson playing football with the children in the neighborhood he patrols, leading locals and complete strangers to show love for Johnson and the positive work he is doing within the community.

"He did an absolute great job just out here playing with the kids — I had no choice but to record it," said Dacia, the anonymous poster.

Johnson has been a Temple police officer for almost four years, and has been stopping in this neighborhood for the last three — he says the kids are teaching him something as well.

"I'm not as young as I used to be for one, but I enjoy this the most out of anything that we get to do day to day," Johnson said.

It's not the usual time spent throwing around the pigskin — Officer Johnson plays with kids while wearing 40 pounds of gear.

It's just part of the reason the kids in the neighborhood surround him with love.

"Giving them stickers, or stopping by and giving them a high five, or helping them out when maybe one of their parents had a bad day — this right here means the world to me," Officer Johnson said.

For Johnson, it's more than just playtime — he believes kids do better when they can follow by example, just like a local child who stood on the sideline watching them play.

"When I saw the officer play I was so impressed — I felt like I wanted to play too."

Video Courtesy of Dacia, Anonymous Poster.