Santa Fe College event shows support for first responders

An Alachua County sheriff’s officer poses with his motorcycle. (Noyanna Pierre-Louis/WUFT News)

More than 300 students, law enforcement, volunteers, and community members were at the Run with the Cops event on Thursday.

All participants gather on the Santa Fe College track to walk, run, or roll with officers from local agencies.

This free community event focuses on those with special abilities and their relationships with first responders and law enforcement.

Nika Richardson and UFPD Captain Latrell Simmons pose after completing their walk around the track. (Noyanna Pierre-Louis/WUFT News)

Ed Book, Santa Fe College Police Department Police Chief, explained why the community came together.

“We focus on our vulnerable populations who are adults and children with abilities and special disabilities,” he said. 

Multiple organizations, including Krispy Kreme and Gainesville Health and Fitness, sponsored the event. Those who came received free shirts and donuts. Participants could receive a certificate of completion if they did four laps around the track.

Courtney Ellis, Gainesville’s Krispy Kreme general manager, poses with volunteers. (Noyanna Pierre-Louis/WUFT News)

Courtney Ellis, the General Manager of the Krispy Kreme in Gainesville, said they try to give back to the community all over North Florida. She explained that they value working with law enforcement. 

“We partner with police officers a lot because it’s good for communication with others,” She said. 

Ellis says that they have been involved with the Run with Cops event for several years. Every year, about 20,000 donuts are given out in support of causes like Run with Cops.

About Noyana Pierre-Louis

Noyana is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing

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