MIDDLETON (WKOW) — Since their response to the workplace shooting last Wednesday which left three injured, Middleton police have been inundated with messages of thanks and encouragement from both near and far.
Whether its cards or cookies, Middleton Police Chief Charles Foulke said the response has been overwhelming.
“I think our social media manager he had counted close to 200 positive responses on Facebook but there’s other places that we don’t even see where people are commenting on it,” Foulke said.
He said this kind of response is certainly never something they expect.
“We don’t like people to give us things, well we’re just doing our jobs,” Foulke said. “We’ve kind of bent our rules a little bit to allow people to make those donations of food and so on because we realize it’s cathartic to them as well as it is to us.”
He said the police department is healing as well. Even though they train for things like an active shooter it’s never something they want to deal with.
Foulke said officers arrived on scene and shot the gunman, stopping him, in eight minutes. The gunman, Anthony Tong, later died from his injuries.
“That’s probably the ultimate responsibility that we have as police officers,” he said. “And that’s the last thing we want to have to to use deadly force.”
As the department looks to move past the shooting they say these kind words help.
“I’m unable to articulate how much I appreciate everybody’s pitching in and support that we’ve gotten,” Foulke said.
Among those kind words is a note from members of the Newtown police communications department. They were part of the response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012 that killed 20 children and six adults.
“Please know you and your community are in our thoughts and prayers. You all did a fantastic job under such stressful conditions and make this communications family proud. Know we are only a phone call or email away if you need us.”
The note came from Maureen Will, director of the Newton Emergency Communions Center.
In a Facebook post, Middleton police also shared some of the dozens of other messages of support they have received.
As we reflect on the workplace shooting that affected our department & our community last week, our hearts are warmed & our spirits lifted by the outpouring of support from neighbors near & far. From comments on social media & handshakes on the streets, to emails, cards, refreshments & treats, to the care package from the Emergency Communication Center at the Newtown Police Department, the generosity & thoughtfulness is sincerely appreciated. #MiddletonStrong #GoodNeighborCity #SeeTheGood