Miami-Dade Police officer who shared lunch with homeless man shares story

MIAMI (WSVN) - A South Florida police officer who shared a meal with a homeless man said the good deed is simply part of his job.

Miami-Dade Police Officer Alberto Acosta meets plenty of people in the Special Patrol Bureau, as he covers big events. “The Marlins games, the Miami Dolphins games, triathlons,” he said.

One man recently caught his eye, and a 7News viewer snapped two pictures of the moments that would follow. “It was something about him,” Acosta said. “I said, ‘Do you want something to eat? I’ll get you something to eat.'”

The officer then brought some barbecue over to the homeless man, who identified himself as Robert, and made him a plate. “I’m sure at that point, he didn’t think he was homeless and I probably wasn’t an officer,” Acosta said. “We’re just like two buddies having a conversation together.”

At the time, Acosta was working an event at the Hyatt. There was also a youth march to Bayfront Park, and part of the officer’s job was to secure the area for a group of 200 to 300 kids, which also meant clearing a restroom nearby. “We had to go in there and request everyone to leave,” he said. “Some were hesitant to leave, and Robert was the nice one.”

He was receptive in a situation, which typically brings tension, but what Acosta would learn is that his dinner companion had suffered a medical condition that sadly led him down the path to homelessness. “Some bad luck, and they lose everything and end up being homeless,” Acosta said.

Acosta went to check up on Robert, Tuesday afternoon, but didn’t have any luck finding him.

A picture of the man, however, is all over Facebook beside Acosta, the day after his good deed, and Acosta said, he shared a moment when he thought no one was watching. That lunch has since helped remind him what’s most important. “It’s the little things that makes a difference,” he said.

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