Published: May 15, 2014 7:07 AM EDT

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) - After a homeless man's shoes were stolen, a South Florida police officer decided he'd do something about it: buy the man a new pair.
    
A Fort Lauderdale Police Department report says that 36-year-old Brian Espeut told Officer Rolando Rivera earlier this month that someone had stolen his shoes while he slept at a Fort Lauderdale park. While Rivera filled out the paperwork, Espeut disappeared and Rivera said he went home after his off-duty detail ended.
    
But Rivera says he was concerned about Espeut so he came back to the park and found him. The officer then went to a store and bought Espeut a pair of work boots and pack of tube socks.
    
Rivera says he felt the unusual police action was justified because Espeut was vulnerable.

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