(CNN) -- Jessica Robles admitted she made a decision to shoplift groceries out of desperation. She said she found herself in a situation where she looked at her children, 12-year-old Anais and two younger boys, and realized she couldn't buy food.
She went to a grocery store and tried to walk out with a cart load of supplies.
Vicki Thomas, the police officer called in to arrest her, asked Robles, "What would make you do that?' And she said, 'My children are hungry."
Instead of taking Robles into custody, Thomas ran her criminal history and found she didn't have a dangerous past.
The officer saw Robles was not a habitual shoplifter so she charged her with a misdemeanor and a notice to appear in court.
Thomas also took an extra step to help the woman and bought her $100 worth of food saying, "I made the decision to buy her some groceries because arresting her wasn't going to solve the problem with her children being hungry."
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