A McDonald’s employee in Brenham northwest of Houston has been fired for refusing to serve an off-duty police officer, according to news reports.
The officer had gone into the restaurant at 500 Highway 290 with his two kids and was turned away by the employee at the counter who told him she didn’t serve law enforcement officers, Brenham Police Chief Craig Goodman told KHOU.com. Another employee stepped in to serve him.
“Nobody deserves to be treated like that,” Goodman said. “We know that these kinds of problems exist elsewhere in the country — did not expect it here.”
He told the station the female employee’s son was already in custody on serious charges and believes that may have been the cause of her negative attitude toward police.
“We know this was an isolated incident that involved a single employee who is not fond of Law Enforcement,” Goodman said in a post on the Brenham Police Department Facebook page. “It is my hopes and prayers that this employee and anyone else who has a negative view of Law Enforcement address the real and/or perceived problem(s) through positive communication with us.”
The McDonald’s franchise owner expressed regret in a comment under the Brenham Police Department post, which included a photo of a group of Brenham police officers standing by a patrol car outside the restaurant Wednesday: “My family was very upset,” he said. “It’s sad that people act this way towards police or other people.”
The incident didn’t take long to grab attention on social media:
Cheers Mickey D’s!!McDonald’s worker fired for refusing service to Brenham officer (Sent from WFAA) — S.E.Logar (@s_logar) July 28, 2016
Good Job @McDonalds #Brenham #Texas We have no time for this kind of ignorance! #BackTheBlue #SupportLocalPD https://t.co/dzJrZAtI5j — Country Boy (@RareDiseaseCure) July 28, 2016
#McDonalds in Brenham quite correct to fire employee who refused to serve police officer.– Jeff Brooks (@JeffreyEBrooks) July 28, 2016
Why does this keep happening? — Tracy Smith Myers (@TracySmithMyers) July 27, 2016
A couple of commenters questioned the restaurant’s action:
Well, it seems in some ways like a violation of civil rights to fire someone for their anger at someone else. hmm — John Garza (@gamewiz1JohnLG) July 28, 2016
There have been numerous reports across the nation of police being denied service in recent months. Just last month in Dallas, an employee at a Genghis Grill was fired for refusing to serve a group of Dallas police officers. In September, two police officers were denied service at a Whataburger in Lewisville.
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