HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. -- A 7-year old Highlands Ranch girl is still jumping for joy after getting a chance to meet the deputy who helped her family following a scary road rage incident.
Emma Young’s mom, Sara, had just picked her up from school.
They were driving past Copper Mesa Elementary, when they noticed another driver speed by in a white pickup.
“He was driving a little too fast in the kid’s zone,” Emma said.
Sara Young said the driver was “getting pretty reckless” and was “tailgating other drivers,” so she snapped a photo of his license plate.
“He noticed me taking a picture,” she said. “That’s when he pulled over.”
Not wanting to confront him, Mrs. Young drove around him.
She said he started following her, aggressively.
“When my mom told me, I was kind of nervous,” Emma said.
Mom Confronts Other Driver
“He wasn’t stopping,” Sara said, “so I pulled over and got out of my car and told him you don’t speed in a kid’s zone. We had a cordial conversation and then went our own ways.”
Mrs. Young said she was rattled enough by what happened that she called the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office afterward.
Deputy Says Don't Confront
Deputy Gage Walpole said he told Mrs. Young to never confront another driver, to just get their license plate number.
“I explained that there are many dangers approaching another vehicle,” he said. “We don’t know who the driver is, or what they have on them. They could have weapons.”
That’s where this story takes a warm-hearted turn.
Little Emma wrote a letter thanking Deputy Walpole for his response.
"I'm your biggest fan," she wrote. "My name is Emma Young. Thanks for being there when people need you."
Emma told her Dad she wanted to meet the deputy.
“She was a little bummed out when she found out that no deputy was going to stop by,” Jamison Young said.
He took his daughter’s hand-written letter, snapped a photo of it, and tweeted it to the Sheriff’s Office.
Emma Meets Deputy Walpole
He then arranged to have Emma deliver the letter to Deputy Walpole in person.
They met at the Sheriff’s Office sub-station in Highlands Ranch.
“She was a little shy at first,” the deputy said. “I asked her about Halloween… and then asked if she wanted to go out and see the police vehicle. Her eyes lit up and she was jumping a little bit.”
“He let me sit in the driver’s seat,” Emma said, “and turn on the lights.”
She described the experience as “really cool.”
“I love seeing cop car lights,” she said.
Lauren Lekander, the lead public information officer for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office posted pictures of the meeting on their Twitter page.
“I hope Deputy Walpole didn’t mind the extra attention,” Mr. Young said with a chuckle. “That was not our intention at all. Emma did a good thing, and we just wanted to give her a chance to follow all the way through.”
Deputy Walpole was just as excited to see Emma and she was to see him.
“It’s always nice,” he said, “it’s a warm feeling knowing that our community reaches out to us and really appreciates what we do.”