When Jordan Schlackman walked into the building and was escorted to the back conference room at the Fountain Valley Police Department Tuesday afternoon, he didn’t have a clue as to what he had done wrong.
“I thought I was going to talk to detectives in a small room somewhere,” he said afterward.
Fountain Valley Police Officer Henry Hsu, organizer of the “surprise” event, had the room filled with patrolmen and administrators, including Chief Daniel Llorens. They were there to present Jordan with a new, high-speed, shiny black, yellow-striped Performance GT bicycle. It replaced the nine-day-old bike Jordan had stolen three weeks ago while attending a class at the Elite Educational Institute in Fountain Valley.
“I was excited, just amazed, that somebody would do something so nice for me,” said the 15-year-old junior at La Quinta High School in Westminster. “I didn’t think I was in trouble, but when you walk in and there’s a whole room of officers…”
Jordan said he got his last bicycle by taking some honors and AP classes and holding a 4.2 grade-point average as a sophomore. He then told his father, Evan, that he wanted to get into a good college after high school.
“He said I had to get good SAT score so he signed me up for an SAT class at Elite,” Jordan told the crowd. “While I was at the SAT class my baby got stolen, but now…all my gosh! A new bicycle! Thank you very much!!”
Officer Hsu, who took the theft report, said he was touched by Jordan’s story and wanted to give something back to someone who deserved a break.
“It’s a rare occasion when you can run into standout citizens especially at a young age. We see so many kids now a days making wrong decisions for so many reasons, and we want to reach out to those people as well. But at the same time we want to encourage the others to stay on the right attract,” Hsu said.
“You work your butt off all year and you have a 4.2 GPA. You’re an honors student, you have goals. You are an example of someone who embodies all those values,” Hsu said to Jordan, who received a heavy-duty bike lock and license for his new bike.
“Most times the crime has already happened and we’re there to solve it. To do something that can turn around a kid’s life after a bad thing happened, I say let’s do it. We want to reward folks who also do well and achieve and work hard. We can’t help everyone but when we have a chance why not?”