Former Drug Addict Reunites With the Officer Who Arrested Her, Gives Him a Surprise

By Paula Liu

A former drug user surprised the officer who arrested and helped her out of an unending downward cycle five years ago.

The Long Beach Police Department held a press conference on Apr. 18, 2018, and Tiffany Hall went to speak about her journey from being involved in drugs to the man who helped her out of it.

It was a reunion for both Hall and Lt. James Foster, for the two had not seen each other for a few years.

The Long Beach Mayor tweeted about the conference and their reunion between the two.

“Lieutenant James Foster met Tiffany in a tough part of the city.

“She was a unique personality. Lots of humor. She had a great story to tell and I noticed she had a tough exterior but a soft interior,” Long Beach Mayor wrote.

Hall, a resident of Long Beach, visited the officer who arrested her all those years ago. She wanted to tell him that she would be graduating with a bachelor’s degree, and it was all thanks to him.

Hall used to be a drug addict, growing up surrounded by an environment filled with drugs, and time after time, she got arrested for drug-related crimes.

“I became a product of my environment…drug infestation, a lot of drug use, and I became that,” Hall said.

No matter how many times she would get arrested, she would always end up in the back of Lt. Foster’s police car—he would always be the one to bring her back to the station.

Slowly, the two formed something of a relationship.

Every time she landed herself in that predicament, she would always try to talk herself out of the back seat of the car, but never worked, and instead, Hall said Lt. Foster would always encourage her.

Long Beach Police Department (CA) 发布于 2018年4月18日周三

“He would encourage me all the time, ‘Tiffany, you can do better than this. Tiffany, why don’t you try to go to school? Tiffany, why don’t you stop?'”

She credited Lt. Foster for helping her break out of her habit. In the press conference, she thanked him for all the encouragement he had given her.

Long Beach Police Department (CA) 发布于 2018年4月18日周三

“I understand it now. You can’t keep breaking the law, and expecting a different outcome. You have to obey the laws of the land.”

She understood that there wasn’t going to be anything in her future if she kept at her ways, so she got her life together, and with the push Lt. Foster gave her, she enrolled into a college.

“I thought about everything Lt. Foster used to say to me, and I made the decision right then and there and I surrendered,” Hall said. “And when I surrendered, I didn’t go back, I kept moving forward.”

She said that she would graduate from college with two degrees, and she planned on moving forward by applying for a master’s program to become a social worker.

Long Beach Police Department (CA) 发布于 2018年4月18日周三

She said she hoped that she would be accepted to one of the programs so that she could help others like Lt. Foster helped her.

“I was encouraged, I was shown compassion and everything.  And most of all—respect, he showed me respect, although I was doing what I was doing. He treated me as a human, and not like I was a nobody.”

Long Beach Police Department (CA) 发布于 2018年4月18日周三

In addition to talking about her experiences, she also invited him to her graduation, and he gladly accepted her invitation.

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world,” he said.

Lt. Foster said that for him, it was a moment like this that makes being a police officer so rewarding.

“The biggest joy of my professional career is from time to time having contact with people who have found their way out of horrible circumstances and into life’s success, things that a lot of us just take for granted for people who have a much rougher life story,” he said.

Hall said, regarding the journey she had from then to now: “Don’t look back behind you because there’s nothing back there. If you keep looking behind you, you’ll never be able to see what’s in front of you.”

Long Beach resident Tiffany Hall, who suffered from substance abuse was frequently incarcerated will surprise veteran Long Beach Police Department (CA) Lieutenant, James Foster.The two have not seen each other for more than five years. Tiffany credits his extra actions back then, with her dramatic transformation. She’s off drugs, off the streets, and attending college. He will not likely recognize her. This connection was made possible by the Long Beach i-team Tiffany will be thanking him in person here!

Long Beach City 发布于 2018年4月18日周三