The image of a uniformed police officer dropping off his daughter at her elementary school was apparently too scary of an image for some parents in Mesa, Ariz. It’s not his uniform that is making them uncomfortable, it’s the gun holstered on his hip.
The principal at Entz Elementary School has reportedly asked the father not to wear his police uniform on campus ever again because parents are concerned that he carries a firearm.
Now, “a lot of people” are “shocked and upset” over the decision, KSAZ-TV reports.
The officer, Scott Urkov of the Coolidge Police Department, only dropped his daughter off at her school.
Officer Urkov wasn’t too happy about the decision either. He reportedly posted the following message on Facebook after the incident:
“Nothing like your kids school calling and asking if I could not come to pick up my daughter in uniform cause parents were concerned when their kids came home telling them there was a man at school with a gun. Are you freaking kidding me?”
However, Urkov told KSAZ-TV that he has been advised not to talk about the incident any more and “just let it be.”
Helen Hollands, spokesperson for Mesa Unified School District, confirmed that there were “some parents who were concerned about that fact that there was a fully armed officer on campus and they spoke to the principal about it.”
The school district apologized if the cop “took the discussion the wrong way.”
“[T]hat was not the intent of the principal to offend him,” Hollands added.
“Meanwhile, while school officials’ initial reaction was to ask the officer not to wear his gun and uniform to school, they are now saying they want to turn this incident into ‘a teachable moment,’” KSAZ-TV reports. “They invited the officer to a special assembly to talk about what police officers do for the community.”