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Dunkin’ Donuts takes swift action after employee refuses to serve police officer

A Dunkin' Donuts refuses to serve a Cleveland, Ohio, police officer — and the action afterward is swift. (MICHELE EVE SANDBERG/AFP/Getty Images)

A Cleveland, Ohio, Dunkin' Donuts franchise immediately terminated one of its employees on Friday after the employee reportedly refused to serve an on-duty police officer.

What are the details?

According to WJW-TV, the cop involved in the incident was Officer Frank Garmback.

The station reported that Garmback approached the counter to order an iced coffee but was immediately rejected.

A family member spoke to WJW, who recalled the incident on Garmback's behalf.

"He wanted an iced coffee," the family member said. "Walked up to the counter and the gentleman told him, 'I don't serve cops,' and turned his back and walked away."

Garmback's niece told the station that Garmback loves what he does, and it broke her heart to hear of his treatment.

"He loves his job," Garmback's niece said. "He loves what he does. And it just broke my heart, him saying, ‘Someone refused to serve me because I was a police officer.'”

Another of Garmback's family members added, "What if [police officers] came on the scene for a robbery at the Dunkin' Donuts and said, ‘Oh, no. I'm not helping you. I'm not protecting you.’"

According to WJW, Paul Patel — the shop's owner — said that he fired the employee that very same day.

"I came in right away, and we got rid of him," Patel told WJW. Patel noted that the employee tried to pass the service refusal off as a joke when confronted.

"That's not a joke," Patel said. "That's not a good joke. We can't tolerate jokes like that."

Patel said he has plans to visit the police station to speak with officers about the incident.

What else?

You might recognize Garmback's name from the 2014 killing of 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland, Ohio.

Garmback was driving the police car that transported the other officer — Timothy Loehmann — who ended up fatally shooting Rice after the child was discovered playing with a pellet gun in a neighborhood park.

According to the station, there is no indication to believe that the employee in question knew that Garmback was one of the officers on the scene for the Rice shooting.

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