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Jaguars and Sheriff's Office try to build police-community relationships

Lights on.jpg
Dan Scanlan
Florida Times-Union
Lights On! Director Sherman Patterson holds an enlarged version of the voucher that will be given to people pulled over by police for faulty lights to get a free repair instead of a ticket.

A voucher for free repair of a faulty headlight or taillight instead of a ticket — that's the year-round Christmas gift the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office is offering with an assist from the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Part of the Lights On! program that started in 2017 in Minnesota, it's a way to defuse uncomfortable or potentially dangerous interactions that can occur when a police officer stops someone over a burned-out light.

At a news conference Wednesday at TIAA Bank Field, Lights On! program director Sherman Patterson said helping someone with a broken taillight could solve a larger problem. That means the conversation with an officer starts with a voucher to help pay for that broken light, and not an expensive citation or worse, he said.

Read the rest of this story at WJCT News partner The Florida Times-Union.