Sierra Wave Media

Eastern Sierra News for June 18, 2024





By Charles James

National Coffee with a Cop at McDonald’s in the Pink

McDonald’s restaurants in Bishop and Lone Pine celebrated National Coffee with a Cop Day two weeks ago on Wednesday, October 3. Several dozen residents dropped in to visit with law enforcement officers representing the California Highway Patrol, the Bishop Police Department and the Inyo County Sheriff’s Department.

Susy Leiva with daughter, Andrea, age 2, BPD Public Information Officer, Jessica Scida, Robert Taggert of Reno with daughter Zoe, age 1, and Lis Mazzu, co-owner of McDonald’s/Photos by Charles James

All too often, the interaction between citizens and police can be uncomfortable, even negative experience. This event lets local police officers and people from Bishop and Lone Pine get together to talk about community issues and build personal relationships in a neutral environment.

Why coffee?

“Coffee is more than just your favorite morning beverage, it’s a connector, a culture, a community builder,” McDonald’s Corporation said in a press release. “The mission of Coffee with a Cop is to break down the barriers between police officers and the citizens they serve.”

Teresa Blum of Bishop with granddaughter Evelyn Rickford, age 3, and BPD Officer Brian Hohenstein.

Local McDonald’s owners, Lis and Kevin Mazzu, have long supported local schools, communities, and local law enforcement, which is why there was no hesitation in hosting the Coffee with a Cop events at their restaurants.

We want to have that connection with our communities that says, ‘We love and support our communities. We love our schools. We love our police and support our communities and our environment,” said Lis Mazzu.

Bishop Police Chief, Ted Stec, expressed appreciation to McDonald’s for its support.

Several people noted that Stec and his officers were wearing pink-lined badges, black caps and arm patches with pink lettering.

Dad Alfredo with Francesca Leiva, age 4, Jordan Valle, age 1-1/2, Mom Susy with Andrea Lieva, age 2. (Back) McDonald’s Manager Carlos Madera, CHP Sergeant Quinn Cuthbertson and Officer Adam Otten, BPD Officer Brian Hohenstein, BPD Lt. Josh Ellsworth, McDonald’s Owner Lis Mazzu, Youth Pastor Jerimiah Girard, and BPD Chief Ted Stec.

Stec explained that the department was expressing its solidarity and support of the fight against breast cancer and that his officers will sport a touch of pink through October in support of breast cancer awareness. His department joins the effort as part of the National Pink Patch Project, a collaborative effort with more than 300 other public safety agencies across the nation designed to increase knowledge about the disease.

“The pink patches are intended to encourage conversation within the community,” said Stec. “And to raise public awareness about the importance of early detection and treatment in the fight against breast cancer.” “We are a part of the community, and we want our citizens to know that we in law enforcement care about more than just law enforcement.”

BPD Officer Brian Hohenstein, Bri McGovern of Bishop with daughter Maeve, age 2, and BPD Lt. Josh Ellsworth

Both Coffee with a Cop and Bishop Police Department’s participation in the National Pink Patch Project serve to remind all of us that our police are not “apart” but rather “a part” of the communities they serve. The next Coffee with a Cop will be held in January. Stop in and get to know your local police.



BPD Chie Ted Stec proudly wearing the “pink” in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.