Charleston WV Dec 23 2016 West Virginia’s Charleston Police Department has created an unlikely crime fighting unit. Eleven women living at a YWCA with either a history of domestic abuse or elderly abuse were sworn in to protect their communities from violence with love.
This new crime fighting crew may not look like a traditional police force, but that doesn’t mean they won’t have a mission. On Wednesday, 11 grandmas were officially made members of the Charleston Police Department’s Grandma Unit, or as their shirts say: the G-Unit. While they won’t be given guns or mace, they hope to reduce crime by spreading love and hugs.
"Sometimes I'm not feeling good or I'm feeling low, and somebody will give me a hug, and I'll feel better, and then I'll share my hug with someone else,” Grandma Unit member Karen Smith told WSET. However, that’s not to say they’re going to skirt their duties. "When we're given something to do we take it seriously, and we keep up with it,” Smith added.
The women will be sent to different parts of the Charleston community to spread love in an effort to reduce violence. They have already brainstormed a list of locations that they plan to visit to carry out the G-Unit’s mission.
All 11 women are residents of the YWCA Shanklin Center for Senior Enrichment, a community of apartments for victims of elder abuse or domestic violence.
"These ladies are super loving ladies. That just really do like interaction with everyone. They love to party,” Program Director for the YWCA Kyla Nichols told WSET.
Corporal Errol Randle of the Charleston Police Department told WSET that it was "a win for everybody. They feel good by doing it, and they wanna do it. That's what helps this awesome partnership.”