Officer who bought boots for homeless man makes detective

Nov. 27, 2013 at 5:00 PM

NEW YORK, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- A New York police officer who made headlines for giving a pair of boots to a barefoot homeless man has been promoted to detective.

Detective Larry DePrimo, who made national headlines in November 2012 when he was seen purchasing a pair of all-weather boots and thermal socks and delivering them to a homeless man in Times Square, was promoted Tuesday in a ceremony at 1 Police Plaza, the New York Post reported Wednesday.

"It's a dream come true, this shield is one of the most coveted shields I think in the country, maybe even the world." DePrimo said. "I look down and it's still unreal to me."

DePrimo said he hopes he will be able to reconnect with Jeffrey Hillman, 54, the man who received his gift of footwear last year.

"Hopefully I'll be able to meet him and see how's he doing," DePrimo said. "I'd shake his hand and ask him if he still wants to grab that coffee or some dinner."

DePrimo said last year's incident left him with a nickname: Boots.

"The name tag in my office says, Larry Boots DePrimo, Queens Warrant Squad," DePrimo said.

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