Clare bakery feeds doughnuts to Mich., Ohio troopers

Chad Livengood
Detroit News Lansing Bureau

Cleveland — After three straight days of directing crowds and traffic clogging downtown Cleveland in 80-degree heat, Michigan State Police troopers were treated to an unexpected snack Thursday from the famous Cops & Doughnuts bakery.

Cops & Doughnuts co-owner Greg Rynearson and the Clare-based chain bakery’s chief operating officer, Tom Testa, delivered 800 tasty doughnuts to Michigan and Ohio state troopers as well as Cleveland police who this week are keeping the city orderly during the Republican National Convention.

“We thought we’d just bring them down a bunch of doughnuts and doughnut holes and a taste home, and they were very glad we came down,” Rynearson said.

Rynearson and Testa left Clare early Thursday morning and drove 325 miles to Cleveland in a yellow Cops & Doughnuts van that features images of the bakery’s lineup of blue-shirt officers.

“It was very thoughtful,” said Inspector James Shaw of the Michigan State Police, who is part of the 150 troopers and supporter staff dispatched to Cleveland to assist Ohio officials. “We were very surprised.”

Rynearson said he got the idea to go to Cleveland after Michigan State Police Director Kriste Kibbey Etue stopped Tuesday into the Clare bakery for breakfast.

“You could tell she was clearly concerned about the guys being down here,” Rynearson said. “She’s really anxious to get them home safe.”

After Rynearson and Testa handed out doughnuts to Michigan and Ohio state troopers throughout the city Thursday afternoon, they drove through Cleveland’s center city, where convention protests were assembled and Cleveland police officers spotted their van.

“We just happened to pull up to an intersection and the guys were holding their hands out,” Rynearson said.

Michigan state troopers have had “a very good week” with few problems in the streets of Cleveland and will head home on Friday, Shaw said.

There were 23 arrests related to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland from Sunday through Thursday evening, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. By comparison, more than 700 people were arrested at the 2008 GOP convention in St. Paul, Minnesota, and 1,800 individuals were arrested at the 2004 national confab in New York City.

“There’s been some protests and marches, but they’ve all been very peaceful,” Shaw said.

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Twitter: @ChadLivengood