For 5-year-old TyLon Pittman, a Jackson, Mississippi, native, Christmas is a big deal. So when he called the police to warn them the Grinch may steal Christmas, his local officers were quick to ease his all-too-real concerns.
TyLon was watching “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” this December when he realized that there was no way he could let the mean, green creature from the world of “Dr. Suess” come and take away his favorite holiday.
He rang up the police, dialing 9-1-1 to report his “emergency.”
His mother could hardly believe he’d done that when he told her. “You better not have,” she told the earnest young boy, assuming it was all a big joke.
To TyLon, though, the threat of the Grinch was very real—and to the police officers who responded to his call, that was all too apparent. So they decided to do something about it.
Hours after he dialed up law enforcement to report the iconic cartoon villain, TyLon and his family heard a knock at the door. When his older brother, TeDera, went to answer the knock, he found himself face-to-face with Officer Lauren Develle—who had come to check on TyLon’s claims.
The young boy pulled up a video of the Grinch on the family’s cell phone, showing Develle the evidence that the Grinch was plotting to take away the holiday for kids everywhere.
“I want him to come to my house,” TyLon told Develle. “I want to take him to jail.”
Develle made a promise—she wouldn’t let anything happen to Christmas on her watch. If the Grinch came, she would let TyLon know, and they would take him down for good.
She and the department worked quickly, inviting TyLon to the station on the Monday before Christmas and bringing him back to the holding cells. There, waiting to be locked away behind bars, was none other than the Grinch himself!
Develle and Police Chief Luke Thompson let TyLon help them finish locking the Grinch away, giving him the chance to shut the cell door and turn the key.
The visit didn’t end there; in honor of TyLon’s future aspirations of going into police work himself, the station gave the 5-year-old a tour and a goodie bag. He got a chance to sit in the patrol car, bring home his own copy of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and got a promise that he’ll get to fill out an application for the police academy when he turns 21.
TyLon’s older brother, 25-year-old senior airman TeDera Graves, said the entire family was amused by the ordeal—even if they did have to have a chat with the kindergartener about when it’s okay to call 9-1-1.
For a chance to save Christmas, though, it’s easy to see how TyLon just couldn’t resist.