An Arlington police lieutenant is starting a mentoring program for young men in the Arlington school district.
The program starts this coming school year, but people who want to be mentors can volunteer right now.
Lt. Tarrick McGuire with the Arlington PD understands.
He's a patrol supervisor. Nine years ago, he was a cop on the beat.
He's never forgotten a 17-year-old boy he took to jail.
“It's not normal for us to find narcotics on someone and also find a baby rattle,” said McGuire.
McGuire says the teen was on the street, had dropped out of school and said his girlfriend was having a baby.
“I told him you only have one mother and need to repair that relationship with your mom,” said McGuire. “Second, that his education would be invaluable during his lifetime."
McGuire says the teen said thanks, but no thanks to the advice. Three months later, their paths crossed again.
“He knocked on my window and said, ‘Hey, officer, do you remember me?’” said McGuire.
The teenager was back home, back in school and working to care for his new daughter.
“He looked at me as someone that helped him,” said McGuire. “But at the same time, he helped impart a vision within me for mentoring young men."
McGuire and Arlington police are starting a program nicknamed MAY, which stands for Mentoring Arlington Youth.
Teens in the program are getting guidance this summer at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Arlington.
The MAY program is separate and will mentor young men when school starts.
It's also partnering with businesses, like The Man's Shop in Arlington.
The owner, Wally Hardin, says how you looks shows others the respect you have for yourself.
“I think it just portrays the confidence of what you want to do, where you want to be,” said Hardin.
McGuire doesn't know what finally became of that teenage boy who learned that good can come from a bad situation, but he hopes he can give other young men the same lesson.
“But the important thing is it stuck with him, and that's what led to him ultimately changing his life,” said McGuire.
For more information, visit http://www.arlington-tx.gov/police/mentoring-arlington-youth/