Halloween: Party in the precinct: MPD-style

A lot of people think police stations are scary, but on Wednesday they got a whole lot scarier.

On Halloween night, Metropolitan Police Department officers transformed the Second District station into a haunted house for local children. Officers traded in their traditional blue uniforms for witch and monster costumes to entertain kids walking through the building’s dark hallways.

Located on Idaho Avenue in Northwest, the station is where GW students are often booked for crimes committed on campus. On Wednesday, the atmosphere was not business-as-usual.

“This is where we put bad people who don’t do their homework,” screeched volunteer Lauretta Greenbacker, dressed as a witch, as she guided a group of kids through the haunted house.

Maurice Samibaja, 6, intently watched the officers lurching out of the darkness as he walked in the darkness.

“It’s getting scarier and scarier every second,” Samibaja said.

When he emerged from the haunted house, Samibaja could not decide which part was the scariest. His mother, who followed close behind, explained why.

“He was closing his eyes the whole time,” she said.

Samibaja’s sister, six-year-old Amal, shied away from an officer who was trying to read her fortune with a crystal ball.

“She didn’t want to get near me or take my hand, so I offered something sweet and then she was my friend,” said officer Renee Davis, who was dressed in black with black wings on her back.

Dressed up as things like evil doctors and cannibalistic chefs,, the officers volunteered their time to offer a safe place to get candy and show kids the friendlier side of their local police department.

In the haunted house, one officer served up human limbs – fresh from the grill – while another jumped out of a dark corner when kids tried to take candy. The children clutched their parents as they walked past an officer dressed as a surgeon spookily lit by strobe lights.

There was also a room decorated with balloons and streamers where kids played musical chairs, danced and ate candy.

Officer Rochelle Reid, dressed as a ladybug, helped escort kids to and from the haunted house and handed them bags of candy and coloring books.

Reid said she was inspired to become an officer because of the casual contact she had with police during her childhood, adding that she hoped she could inspire someone else.

“When they see it, they say, ‘That’s fun,’ and want to help people,” Reid said.

“They’re so innocent, nice, fun,” she added, referring to the children.

Officer Lisa Myers said she wanted kids “to know that under normal circumstances they shouldn’t be afraid (of the police).”

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