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Little girl praised for giving cops at Covid border checkpoint lollies

Daily Mail logo Daily Mail 1/12/2020 Brittany Chain In Coolangatta For Daily Mail Australia
a group of people in uniform: MailOnline logo © Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo

A young girl from a New South Wales border town shared an emotional goodbye with police at the coronavirus checkpoint after visiting them every day since March.

Little Harper Davey developed a close bond with several of the officers at the Coolangatta border check point in Queensland over the course of the pandemic.

The four-year-old would walk to the border from her Tweed home with her nan, Stephanie McKittrick, to treat the officers with cold water and lollies to keep them going during long days. 

In particular, she would bring them different flavours of 'Life Saver' lollies, to remind them that they were helping to 'save people's lives'. 

Ms Mckittrick, a mental health nurse, said Harper first came up with the idea after she was yelled at while dining at a nearby cafe.

a woman talking on a cell phone: Little Harper Davey developed a close bond with several of the officers at the Coolangatta border check point over the course of the pandemic © Provided by Daily Mail Little Harper Davey developed a close bond with several of the officers at the Coolangatta border check point over the course of the pandemic On Tuesday, Superintendent Mark Wheeler and Senior Constable Durant presented Harper with gifts on behalf of Queensland Police for keeping the officers fed, energised and upbeat for the past nine months © Provided by Daily Mail On Tuesday, Superintendent Mark Wheeler and Senior Constable Durant presented Harper with gifts on behalf of Queensland Police for keeping the officers fed, energised and upbeat for the past nine months

‘She must’ve been playing with little rocks or something and a man said ‘’do you want me to call the police and they’ll lock you up’’,’ she recalled. 

Harper was rocked by the comments and, for the first time in her life, worried that she would be in trouble with the police.

Her pop Alan has been a police officer for 35 years and Ms McKittrick said while Harper understood that police are the ‘good guys’, she was still fretting about being put in jail. 

‘But they’re lifesavers,’ she said. 

While she knows police ‘are the good guys’ just like her pop, the comment left her shaken.

To prove to Harper that she had nothing to worry about, her nan took her on a short walk to the border, which was crawling with officers. 

a person holding a girl: Senior sergeant Jason Durant quickly earned the title of Harper’s favourite officer (pictured together) © Provided by Daily Mail Senior sergeant Jason Durant quickly earned the title of Harper’s favourite officer (pictured together) On Tuesday, Superintendent Mark Wheeler and Senior Constable Durant presented Harper with gifts on behalf of Queensland Police for keeping the officers fed, energised and upbeat for the past nine months © Provided by Daily Mail On Tuesday, Superintendent Mark Wheeler and Senior Constable Durant presented Harper with gifts on behalf of Queensland Police for keeping the officers fed, energised and upbeat for the past nine months

Shy at first, Harper eventually warmed to the officers who greeted her and decided to go to the store to buy them lollies to keep them going during long shifts in the Queensland sun. 

‘She saw the lifesavers and thought they’d be perfect. So now she picks her flavours each day and comes and drops them around.’ 

Senior sergeant Jason Durant quickly earned the title of Harper’s favourite officer. 

‘He really went out of his way to talk to her and there was one day in particular when she really bonded with him,’ Ms McKittrick said. 

‘When he was sent to M1 she realised straight away, she asked where he had gone and then looked at me and said ‘’how far away is it’’. 

The duo posed for pictures together and chatted like old friends when they were reunited on Tuesday. 

a group of people posing for the camera: Shy at first, Harper eventually warmed to the officers who greeted her and decided to go to the store to buy them lollies to keep them going © Provided by Daily Mail Shy at first, Harper eventually warmed to the officers who greeted her and decided to go to the store to buy them lollies to keep them going

She handed him a handful of packets of lifesavers and gave him a cuddle. 

When asked how she felt about Constable Durant, she looked at him with a huge grin and said ‘he’s my favourite’. 

When he learned of the threat made at a nearby cafe, he promised Harper she wouldn’t be going to jail.

Harper said she feels ‘sad’ about the checkpoint being lifted because now she won’t be able to speak to her new friends any more. 

‘We should have brought them fruit but Harper insisted on the lifesavers,’ she said. 

‘We were just really fed up hearing people around town saying that resources could be better used elsewhere. 

'It’s tough being a cop, or a cops wife or child or family. The family were in favour of the border closures and states individually doing what needed to be done to keep residents safe.'

a person standing in front of a building: She received her very own police cap, along with a handwritten card and a stuffed animal police dog, which she said was her favourite as she cuddled it tightly after giving the officers ‘covid-safe high fives’ © Provided by Daily Mail She received her very own police cap, along with a handwritten card and a stuffed animal police dog, which she said was her favourite as she cuddled it tightly after giving the officers ‘covid-safe high fives’

Ms Mckittrick said she understood people were struggling during the lockdown and had been swept off her feet as a mental health nurse throughout the crisis. 

‘I’ve just been doing house checks and spending hours on the phone and checking in on people who have been stuck in their houses since March,’ she said. 

But it was important to her and Harper that the officers working at the border knew there were people who appreciated their efforts. 

On Tuesday, Superintendent Mark Wheeler and Senior Constable Durant presented Harper with gifts on behalf of Queensland Police for keeping the officers fed, energised and upbeat for the past nine months. 

She received her very own police cap, along with a handwritten card and a stuffed animal police dog, which she said was her favourite as she cuddled it tightly after giving the officers ‘covid-safe high fives’. 

On Tuesday, Queensland’s border opened to Sydneysiders and Victorians for the first time since March. 

Officers at the border said they hoped they never had to enforce a hard border closure again.

‘Not like that,’ one of them said.

a group of people standing around a fire hydrant: Harper said she feels ‘sad’ about the checkpoint being lifted because now she won’t be able to speak to her new friends any more © Provided by Daily Mail Harper said she feels ‘sad’ about the checkpoint being lifted because now she won’t be able to speak to her new friends any more Read more

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