WASHINGTON HEIGHTS — Police officers from the 34th Precinct handed out toys to local kids Wednesday as part of a drive organized by the NYPD and local schools.
More than 100 parents and kids, between the ages of 1 to 14, attended the toy drive at the precinct station house, grabbing everything from Barbies and Legos to frisbees, bracelet-making kits and chemistry sets.
The event was a collaboration between the precinct, Toys for Tots, P.S. 48 and the Amistad Dual Language School and served students from the after-school program at P.S. 143 and families from the Dyckman Houses.
"Instead of doing gifts exchanges of their own, they brought in these toys and gave them to us to give to more needy kids," said Deputy Inspector Chris Morello, commanding officer of the precinct.
Police said the annual event, one of several they've held since Thanksgiving, is important because it builds a connection with families in the community.
"This is about improving the relationship between the cops and the community we serve," Morello said. "And getting kids to see us as friends."