One of the main reasons for the creation of "Operation Copsicle" was to not only create a better relationship between the community and local law enforcement, but to also try to create positivity in negative situations.

That is what happened on Monday evening on Elm Street in Pittsfield.

Pittsfield Police officer Darren Derby decided to take the ice cream truck to the area to, at least for a few moments, try to forget all of the unfortunate events that have transpired in the area recently -- which included a bank robbery at Berkshire Bank on Monday morning.

"One of the main driving points for acquiring an ice cream truck for the police department was for post tramatic incident responses," Derby said. "Seldom do police departments have anything set in place where they go back into the communities affected by a tramatic incident and follow up with those who call those areas home."

Monday's incident at Berkshire Bank was the second attempted bank robbery, and the third overall in a week on Elm Street. If there is a silver lining to be found, the Pittsfield Police were able to find and arrest the suspect in Monday's robbery.

Naturally, citizens of that area of Pittsfield have to be feeling on edge and nervous with what has been going on. Derby, along with the entire department, was well aware of that fact. At the same token, members of the Pittsfield Police have needed time to reflect what has been going on as of late as well -- Monday especially.

"We know those living, working, visiting or frequenting that area have been on high alert," Derby said. "Although (Monday's) strong police work lead to the quick arrest of the suspected bank robber, I'm sure it doesn't make those folks feel any more at ease.

"Sometimes those in uniform forget about our own mind, body and soul and we just move on to the next incident, not thinking of how we personally processed the calls for today," Derby continued. "It was surely a day that we hope only comes a couple of times a year. From a suspected gun call, to a bank robbery, to a crazed individual likely on PCP, we had them all and at the same time!"

What Derby and the Pittsfield Police want the public to know is that you are not alone. They are here to help however they can -- whether it's to answer the call or simply, even if just temporarily, turn frowns into smiles. That is the mission of "Operation Copsicle".

" decided to head out in 'Operation Copsicle' and hit up the Elm St. as well as the southeast section of the city (on Monday evening) after my shift was over. I ran into some long time friends as well as made many many new ones. It was all about creating smiles and boy were we successful!"

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