Prince Albert Police Service appointed a new police chief on Wednesday.
Grade 7 student Katie Enquist became P.A.’s first-ever chief for a day. Katie, who suffers from numerous health conditions attended a special swearing-in ceremony at police headquarters. She then joined the temporarily-demoted Troy Cooper on his morning duties and accompanied Const. Darryl Hickie on a traffic enforcement ride-along.
“When I heard about Katie, I thought she’d make a great police officer,” said Hickie. “Katie has a life of adversity and she always gets up every morning, she has a smile on her face, and she’s always fighting through the toughest days like police officers do.”
Chief Troy Cooper said Katie had all the attributes the job requires.
“She has spent her entire school time cheerful and as a positive example,” Cooper said. “These are things we think are pretty special.”
Before taking office, Katie needed to learn some of the tricks of the trade from her predecessor.
“Before we brought her here we had to practice the stern look,” Cooper said as he instructed Katie on the proper technique of gazing over a pair of glasses and shaking her head in disappointment.
The new chief quickly had an opportunity to use her stern glare, as Cooper had her deliver reprimands to several officers for missing ticket quotas and eating donuts on the job.
Katie’s parents said the day meant the world to their daughter, who often watches Cops and other police shows with her brother and sister.
“She was so thrilled,” Katie’s mother Karlie Enquist said. “She doesn’t verbalize that much, but she was clapping her hands and smiling from ear to ear.”
Karlie said their family has known Katie’s condition is terminal for about a month, but the sad news did nothing to dampen her daughter’s joyful demeanor. Katie’s response to the news, Karlie said, was to ask if she could have purple angel wings.
“We said ‘Katie, you’re going to have the biggest, brightest purple wings ever,’” she said.
Katie also received a commemorative challenge coin and a specially-tailored police shirt. Her portrait was hung next to Cooper’s in the gallery of police chiefs.