HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – When Rick Brooks turned down the street to his Hollywood home Friday July 3, he was stunned by what he saw.
“My heart dropped. My wife was like ‘oh my God what’s happening,” Brooks said.
At first startled by the sight of two police officers running with his 18-year-old son and sixteen-year-old friend, Brooks and his wife quickly realized it was nothing nefarious.
“We saw these two kids playing. I have basketball sneakers. I said to my partner Anthony ‘let’s put on our sneakers and see what these kids got,’” said Hollywood Police Officer John Guzman.
Brooks and the boys were pleasantly surprised.
“It was a nice thing for them to just pass by and see the guys playing ball and decide to get a one-on-one game, it was good,” Brooks said smiling.
In the midst of anger directed at law enforcement, Guzman and his partner Anthony Horta hope the connection, even if it was brief, helps others see the human being behind the badge.
“We’re all about building positive relationships in Hollywood,” said Horta. “That’s definitely what we’re all about.”
The game only lasted 20 minutes with the officers ultimately winning, which means a rematch is in the works.
The boys are looking forward to it and so are their new friends in uniform.
“We’re gonna see what they go. We’ll give them a few days to practice and see what happens,” said Guzman with a laugh.
Horta added with a smile, “Yep, I’m ready, I’m sure he is too, we want a rematch.”
And maybe this time, the boys will win.