A North Carolina jewelry store manager is out of a job after denying entry to a sheriff's deputy picking up his engagement ring — and all because the uniformed deputy was armed with his service weapon, WSIC-FM reported.
The station added that Kay Jewelers wouldn't say if the manager of its Statesville store resigned or was fired.
While the Iredell County deputy was on a meal break Tuesday, the store notified him that his engagement ring was sized and ready to be picked up.
So he headed over to the store — but never got inside.
The sheriff's office revealed on Facebook that the store manager met the deputy at the door saying he couldn't enter while armed with his service weapon.
"The deputy informed the manager he was in uniform and his marked patrol car was in the parking lot, and it would be a violation of policy for him to remove his service weapon while in uniform," the post added.
The sheriff's office post explained that the policy requiring deputies to remain armed "is in place for not only the safety of the deputy, but the general public as well."
The store manager told the deputy he could return to the store at a different time when he was not armed, according to the Facebook post, and that the deputy left the store without the ring.
What else did the sheriff's office say?
"The reaction our deputy encountered is very difficult for us to comprehend," the sheriff's office added in its Facebook post, "and we earnestly hope situations such as these are few and are diminishing."
The post also said that Sheriff Darren Campbell tried contacting Kay Jewelers' corporate office numerous times but hadn't received a response.
Kay Jewelers replies
But Kay Jewelers did reply to a request for comment from WSOC-TV.
"Kay Jewelers is reaching out to the customer and the Iredell County Sheriff's Office to sincerely apologize for the mishandling of this matter," the company told the station. "We have tremendous respect for law enforcement, and we thank the Office for bringing this to our attention. We will be sure to reinforce store training regarding our firearm policy with specific regard to uniformed law enforcement."
Campbell told WSIC the deputy eventually decided to not pick up the ring and received a refund.