Dayton police officer Byron Branch was injured last December in the line of duty. On Thursday, local officers will play in a benefit baseball game that will honor Branch and recognize local first responders.

Dayton police plan multiple community events Thursday

City of Dayton police officers will have coffee with the community, run in a Special Olympics 5k, and participate in a benefit baseball game on Thursday.

Several officers from the West Patrol Operations Division will host ‘Coffee With a Cop’ at the Benjamin’s the Burger Master restaurant from 10 to 11 a.m.

“Residents are invited to interact with officers and encouraged to ask questions, voice concerns, or just chat with the men and women who patrol nearby neighborhoods,” the department said in a press release.

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At 1 p.m., officers from Dayton and other Montgomery County jurisdictions will run a leg in the 2017 Ohio Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics. The 5.6-mile run will start in front of the Safety Building on West Third Street and finish at National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.

Police officers nationwide have supported the Special Olympics for more than 30 years, the press release said.

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City officers will conclude the day with a baseball game that will recognize local first responders and benefit Officer Byron Branch, who is recovering from a line-of-duty injury he suffered Dec. 16.

Branch, a rookie officer and a new father, lost part of his right leg when a driver slid off the road into his cruiser, which hit him and the driver from an earlier accident he was investigating on a rainy, icy stretch of Interstate 75 near U.S. 35.

The Dayton police will square off against the Brick City Blast, a local 15U select baseball team concentrating on community service, at Action Sports Center. First pitch will be at 6 p.m.

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