KANSAS- It’s no secret that there is a closeness in police work among officers that some know as a “thin blue line.” Police want to support police, because we are supposed to all be on the same team.
We all put up with the same crap every day; we all risk laying our lives down for others every day.
We want to believe that our brother or sister (whether on the same squad or across the country) will be honest and forthcoming. And when someone attacks one of them, physically or figuratively…it’s on.
But when one of those officers pull some ridiculous stunt that makes us all look bad, it pisses us off.
Earlier this week, Law Enforcement Today brought you a story about a Herington Police Officer in Kansas receiving an inappropriately marked coffee cup from his local McDonalds restaurant.
Police Chief Brian Hornaday announced via Facebook that one of his officer’s coffee cups had “Fucking Pig” written on it. The Chief reached out to McDonalds, who offered the officer a free lunch as an apology.
Rightly so, the Chief retorted, “A Big Mac and large fries doesn’t make up for it.”
We as officers know how it feels to be called names and to be blatantly disrespected like that. We act tough and put out an “I don’t care what they say about me” attitude, but deep down, we really do. It sucks.
We would literally give the shirts off of our backs to these people; we would (and sometimes do) give them the very food from our personal lunch boxes; we would give our lives to keep them safe. And they name call and tell us to go die in response.
So, of course the law enforcement community was in uproar after the photograph of the explicitly addressed to-go cup was posted online. It was just one more act in a series of Ikeas, Fogo de Chaos, and Starbucks screwing officers over.
Today, we found out that the whole thing was not even true. The rookie officer made the entire thing up. As “a joke.”
“This was completely and solely fabricated by a Herington police officer who is no longer with our agency,” Chief Hornaday commented. “Moving forward, the Herington Police Department will work tirelessly to regain to loss of trust with both McDonald’s and with the citizens that we serve.”
The officer in this incident is 23-years-old, and remains unnamed. He had been working with HPD for just two months, served for 5 years as an Army MP, and has resigned from the department.
The McDonalds location’s owner, Dana Cook, said in a news conference Monday:
“My McDonalds [employees] have the utmost respect for all members of law enforcement and the military and were troubled by the accusation made. We thoroughly reviewed our security video from every angle, which clearly shows the words were not written by one of our employees.”
“In fact, I have several family members who are law enforcement officers. We take any incident like this seriously and are currently investigating the allegation made.”
Well thanks a lot, Rookie. It’s hard enough to get any type of support in our communities, and now you make up a complete lie that made honest and supportive community members look terrible.
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Not to mention, you clearly have a chief who is willing to step up and make sure you’re taken care of.
He wasn’t going to let his officers get this poor treatment. Do you know how many officers out there would give anything to have a supportive chief like that? And now you’re going to make him mop up a mess of public relations.
All because you suck at being funny.
Obviously, we all know that if he was making a joke, it should have stayed within the briefing room. Piss your squad off with the foul language, but stop it from causing damage.
You know, like before your Chief of Police takes the incident to the media. Complete with pictures.
Incidents like this are what hurts officers’ credibility, and their trust from their communities.
The kid’s name was never released, but Law Enforcement Today discovered who he was, and the “Special Reaction Team” was all set to send him a gift pack from Bottle Breacher, Battle Grounds Coffee, and Proud Pig (the first two are owned by former Navy SEALS, the last by a retired NYPD Detective).
Because, like I said, police like to take care of police. But not when one of said police are liars.
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