Calgary police sweeten sour experience for girls whose lemonade stand money was stolen

Jasmine Zacher isn't sure what came over her 11-year-old body, but before she knew it, she was racing down the street in hot pursuit of the people who'd just stolen her lemonade stand money.

The preteen and her best friend were operating the stand Friday in Ramsay.

"I don't know. I just did it in the spur of the moment," she told CBC's the Calgary Eyeopener on Wednesday morning.

The girl​​​​​ gave chase but wasn't able to catch the woman who'd swiped between $40 and $50 from their sidewalk shop — much to the relief of her mother, Bonnie Sullivan. 

In fact, Sullivan had no idea her daughter had run after the thief and her two accomplices until she heard Jasmine tell the police what had happened.

"I know that she wouldn't know what to do when she got there, so it was a little bit nerve-racking to hear that she'd done that," said Sullivan.

Calgary Police Service/Facebook

A sweeter deal

Calgary police officers made numerous inquiries, even requested security camera footage from the neighbours to see if they could get a clear image of the offenders. Unfortunately, the cameras weren't working at the time.

When it became clear the police wouldn't be able to locate the culprits, Const. Brandon Hopkins proposed a sweeter deal.

"The constable actually said, 'Have another lemonade stand. I'll bring the team out,'" Sullivan recalled.

Two days later, they did just that.

"And there's our little neighborhood lemonade stand with 10 police officers all standing around and drinking lemonade and chatting up an 11-year-old," said Sullivan, laughing.

With uniformed officers lined up to buy a cup, the girls made more than enough to cover what was lost.

"I counted and I earned $96," said Jasmine, who is now 12.

While Sullivan can't quite make sense of why the thieves did what they did, she said she's grateful for the community's response.

"To most adults, the idea of stealing from children is really not something that we would consider doing, but I do know that there's lots of support," said Sullivan.

"And that's the thing for me — the fact that Const. Hopkins stood up and brought in his entire team to help support these girls and to make it right."

With files from the Calgary Eyeopener.