A Louisiana Burger King franchise reportedly refused service to police officers, and when confronted about it, the franchise owner demanded an apology — from the cops.
What are the details?
According to an article in the Bayou Journal and Blue Lives Matter, employees at a Burger King in West Feliciana Parish reportedly refused service to two cops who had visited the location in May.
Two Assumption Parish deputies had just finished SWAT training in Zachary, Louisiana, and had stopped at a nearby Burger King in St. Francisville.
Lonny Cavalier, the public information director for the Assumption Parish Sheriff's Office, told Blue Lives Matter that the two officers pulled into the drive-thru lane and attempted to place their order.
The officers were riding in a patrol vehicle. Cavalier told Blue Lives Matter, "[The officers] sat [at the drive-thru kiosk] for an extended period of time before someone finally let them order."
Cavalier said that when one of the officers requested a chicken sandwich, an unidentified female inside cut him off and sarcastically said, "We're out of chicken."
The officer proceeded in an attempt to order a Whopper, and this time he was reportedly cut off by an unidentified male, who said, "We're out of burgers, too."
Apparently realizing that something was up, the officers asked those on the drive-thru intercom if the items were actually out of stock, or if they just did not serve police officers at this particular location.
"The only response was laughter," Cavalier told Blue Lives Matter.
The officers reportedly moved onto the payment window after being told that they were out of both chicken sandwiches and burgers. According to the outlet, the two officers parked the vehicle, and one of them exited the car to stick his head inside the take-out window to speak with someone.
"[The officer] could hear [employees] inside laughing, but no one would come to the window," Cavalier said.
The officers eventually left the restaurant — empty-handed — and reported the alleged incident to their supervisor. Cavalier told the outlet that the two officers were "embarrassed and humiliated."
"This is new for us," he added. "We've not had that kind of relationship with any vendors, ever."
What did the department decide to do about the alleged incident?
Cavalier told Blue Lives Matter that he contacted the restaurant's corporate office multiple times, but got no resolution. So he took his concerns to the editor of the Bayou Journal in a letter.
"What is troubling is that these same Burger King employees, in the event a robbery was occurring at the time, would have expected these two deputies to take a bullet for them, and those deputies would have," Cavalier wrote in the letter.
"Now we'll wait and see how Burger King and Corporate Office responds," Cavalier's letter added.
Cavalier's letter originated from the Bayou Journal and was highlighted by Facebook user Matt Armstrong on June 15.
Armstrong shared a photo of the article and captioned it, "Our police have one of the most dangerous vocations and as this letter to the editor exemplifies, 'a mostly thankless job' in today’s environment!!!"
"We have great police protection and a safe community thanks to our police and sheriffs departments!!" he added.
What happened after the letter was published?
The St. Francisville Burger King owner reportedly reached out to Cavalier about a week after the newspaper published the director's letter — and he was not happy.
"[The franchise owner] was very angry," Cavalier told Blue Lives Matter. "Very upset. He said, 'My employees never refused to serve any police officers.'"
Cavalier said the unnamed store owner claimed that the officers' story was an "outright lie" and that the employees simply had just refused service to "people who just happened to be police."
"All we were looking for was a fair shake," Cavalier said, noting that the department didn't even ask for the employees in question to be fired. "Not an excuse – just an explanation."
According to Cavalier, the store manager had already fired the employees in question.
The store manager reportedly told Cavalier that surveillance footage of the alleged incident existed, but he refused to turn it over to the department.
Cavalier told Blue Lives Matter that the store owner reportedly attempted to contact the Parish's sheriff "multiple times" after the allegations came to light, but noted that the sheriff had no messages or missed calls from the Burger King owner.
Instead of apologizing, Cavalier said that the store owner demanded an apology from the police department as well as a retraction on the story.
"I told him, 'Don’t wait, because there will be no retraction,'" Cavalier said.
Cavalier explained that the store owner would be in contact to further discuss the issue but noted that he has yet to hear back from the store owner at all.
"If the employees were actually terminated, that’s fine, but [Burger King] needs to make amends to their own community," Cavalier said. "It’s a very nice town and we don’t blame the town – we blame Burger King as a whole."
"[Burger King owes] the department and their own citizens an apology," Cavalier said.
(H/T: Blue Lives Matter)