McDonalds employee hands officer cup of expletive-laced coffee: “f’ing pig”


**Update –  after the truth was revealed about this officer, we launched a new article calling him out.  You can find that here.

**Additional Update – After an investigation into the incident, the officer has been fired. Read more on that here. 

JUNCTION CITY, Kan. – Another day, another officer insulted in a restaurant.  The latest incident took place in a McDonalds in Kansas.

Herington Police Chief Brian Hornaday said in a Facebook post that one of his officers received a coffee with a handwritten expletive on it from a McDonald’s in Junction City.

It happened just after 6 a.m. Saturday when a Herington police officer stopped at the McDonald’s drive-thru at 1127 South Washington St. in Junction City while he was on his way to work.

Hornaday shared the details in a press release.

He said that after picking up his coffee, the officer made his way back to the police department and that was when he saw the words “fucking pig” written on the side of the cup.

“This behavior has been, is and always will be wrong,” Hornaday said.

According to Hornaday, the officer was offered a “free lunch” as an apology.

The chief said “A Big Mac and large fries doesn’t make up for it.”

“This police officer has never met the McDonald’s employee,” Hornaday said. “He has spent the last two months serving the citizens of Herington, visiting patients at Herington Municipal Hospital during Christmas who couldn’t be home for the holidays, participating in a Christmas give away at Herington Elementary School and many other positive things geared towards providing a positive future for the City of Herington.”

Hornaday said that for now, he’s not going to release the officer’s name.

He said they’re in touch with McDonald’s and will continue to work with them “to ensure this matter is resolved in a positive manner.”

According to an employee at the McDonald, they are “investigating internally.”

In the meantime, Law Enforcement Today has learned the identity of the officer, and he’s got a special treat coming from our SRT – or “Special Reaction Team” – made up of three patriotic companies.

Bottle Breacher and Battle Grounds Coffee – both owned by former Navy SEALS – along with Proud Pig – owned by a retired NYPD detective – will be sending a care package.

Here’s the back story of how these three companies came together to support police officers who find themselves attacked like this.

Two weeks ago, there was yet another show of disrespect to officers just looking to get a cup of coffee.  And a few patriotic men are sick and tired of it.  So they’re fighting back.

First… here’s what went down.

Starbucks, the coffee giant that shut down more than 8,000 locations for a day last year to show employees anti-police propaganda all in the name of “anti-bias training”, again made headlines after what happened in Riverside County, California.

That’s where the sheriff’s department claims that two of its deputies were refused service.

Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco wasn’t having it.  He tweeted:

“The anti police culture repeatedly displayed by Starbucks employees must end.”

Starbucks was quick to respond when ABC News contacted them.

They acknowledged that the two California deputies were in uniform when they visited the Starbucks at around 11 p.m., and were ignored by workers for about five minutes.

“There is simply no excuse for how the two deputies were ignored,” said Starbucks spokesperson Reggie Borges. “We’re deeply sorry for that.”

But the company says they weren’t refused service… just “inadvertently ignored”.


Starbucks says to be on the safe side, they’ve launched an investigation into the incident to better understand if the deputies were intentionally ignored by the employees.

The said in the meantime, the employees who were on duty are not being scheduled to work… and that Starbucks leadership will travel to the location to fully understand what unfolded.

In the meantime, they claim they’ve reached out to Sheriff Bianco to apologize.

“We really want to connect with the two deputies, apologize directly, and hear their stories,” explained Borges. “We take full responsibility for any intentional or unintentional disrespect to law enforcement.”

First… Send in the Navy SEALS

Ever hear of an SRT?  It’s short for “Special Reaction Team”.  Basically… it’s the guys you send in when you need to move quickly to protect people.

Enter: Eli Crane and Salvatore DeFranco.

Eli is the CEO of a company called Bottle Breacher, which you probably saw on Shark Tank.  They turn .50 cal bullets into bottle openers.

Salvatore DeFranco is the CEO of Battle Grounds Coffee.  It’s a brand that’s exploded – both in terms of online sales and brick and mortar locations.  

(Editor note: Law Enforcement Today is proud to support and buy from both companies, knowing that a portion of proceeds help support law enforcement charities.)

Both men run the respective companies alongside their incredible brides – Jen Crane and Dana DeFranco. 

veterans, The Whiskey Patriots, Eli Crane, Jen Crane, Bottle Breacher

One could argue the ladies are both the brains and looks behind the operations.

Salvatore and Dana DeFranco of Battle Grounds Coffee
Salvatore and Dana DeFranco of Battle Grounds Coffee

Eli and Sal served as Navy SEALS together.  When Sal was in an accident that nearly took his life and ended up in a coma for more than two months, Eli was by his side.

(Above: Sal DeFranco of Battle Grounds Coffee is featured in an interview for the Long Live The Veteran Brotherhood Series, started by Navy SEAL Sniper Eli Crane, the CEO of Bottle Breacher.)

The two have remained friends over the years.  As their companies have grown, so have the friendships between the two couples.

Under the leadership of the four patriotic Americans, the brands have exploded with a “God and country first” message.  

(Above: A video about the core values of Eli and Jen)

So when they saw police officers starting to get shafted at Starbucks, they decided to create their own “Special Reaction Team”.

“It’s unacceptable to us that these police officers continue to be disrespected time and time again,” said Eli.  “We wanted to show our brothers and sisters in blue that we stand beside them.”

Eli and Sal both recognize that the battlefield isn’t just overseas – it’s now on our streets as well.

“There’s a war on police officers underway right now,” said Sal.  “They are being targeted, shot, stabbed, run over and murdered… leaving behind countless survivors to try and pick up the pieces.  And yet your company is going to embrace a culture where it’s acceptable to treat them like dirt?  Not on our watch.”

The two couples knew that taking a pro-law enforcement stance wasn’t without risk.  But they don’t give a damn.

“God is at the center of every decision we make,” said Jen.  “Do the right thing every single time – period.  It’s a pretty simple business philosophy.”

Battle Grounds has locations in Elizabeth Warren’s territory of Massachusetts.  She’s been historically anti-law enforcement.  But to Dana and Sal, it’s not about politics.

“Believe what you want.  Vote how you want.  But recognize that we are blessed to do all of that because we have brave men and women willing to lay down their lives to keep you safe.”

Enter: NYPD’s “Proud Pig”

“We’re all in this together.”

When Michael Burke heard about what Sal and Eli were doing… he decided help make it a hat trick to support all of the officers getting screwed.

Michael Burke is a retired member of the NYPD. 

He started a company a few years back called “Proud Pig”… and thought this was the perfect opportunity to send some free swag out to the deserving officer who was called a pig.

NYPD Proud Pig

“These attacks on our law enforcement officers are happening all across the country,” said Burke.  “The media is doing everything in their power to divide us.  We wanted to show that the brotherhood is still alive and well.  We’re excited to send out some gifts to this officer.”

Proud Pig has exploded over the past couple of years, quickly becoming one of the favored clothing apparel lines for those who support officers… and those who hold the Thin Blue Line.

Proud Pig

Unapologetic and “New York” in attitude, the company turns the “pig” insult upside down.

“As a lifestyle brand, Proud Pig Apparel aims to re-energize the sense of Brotherhood and pride in the Blue Line that is disappearing daily from our profession.  We will not allow false narratives to divide us.

We hope to inspire all with our ‘in your face’, non-apologetic Swine Swag.  Original designs and superior customer experience, from a Law-Enforcement-owned and operated business.  A portion of all profits are donated to Law Enforcement charities.

Pride, Integrity & Guts.  P.I.G.”


NYPD Proud Pig


What They’re Doing

Outside of the tremendous number of donations they’ve made over the years to organizations like Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.), the two couples… along with Michael Burke and his team at Proud Pig… have been quietly hooking up the officers who have been getting screwed over by companies like Starbucks.

(Above: A sit down with Eli talking about the role God plays in his company, his service and his family.)

Every time they hear of it happening… they try and hunt down the addresses of the officers and send them a care package.  Coffee from Battle Grounds (that actually tastes good, unlike the failure-flavored grinds from Starbucks) and a “freedom package” from Bottle Breacher.  Throw in some “Proud Pig” swag and you’ve got quite the surprise package.

One of those packages was directed to officers in Oklahoma after an employee in Kiefer last month wrote “PIG” on the coffee cups of an officer on Thanksgiving. 

In that incident, the employee was fired the day after Thanksgiving – only after the story exploded in the media.

Starbucks said the worker “used poor judgment and is no longer a partner’’ after the violation of company policy.

Here’s what happened there.

A Kiefer police officer with the Green Country Police Department said he received his drinks with the word “PIG” written on the cups on Thanksgiving.

Kiefer Police Chief Johnny O’Mara spoke to the local media about it.

According to the chief, one of his officers who was working Thanksgiving went to the Glenpool Starbucks to get coffee for dispatchers who were also having to work the holiday. 

He said each of the five cups the officer received had the “pig” label.

“This is what he gets for being nice,” O’Mara said in a Facebook post.

He included a picture of one of the cups.

“What irks me is the absolute and total disrespect for a police officer who, instead of being home with family and enjoying a meal and a football game, is patrolling his little town,” the chief said.

He said it’s part of a bigger picture.

“This cup of coffee for a ‘pig’ is just another little flag. It’s another tiny symptom and a nearly indiscernible shout from a contemptuous, roaring and riotous segment of a misanthropic society that vilifies those who stand for what’s right and glorifies the very people who would usher in the destruction of the social fabric.

It’s another tiny pinprick into the heart of men and women who are asking themselves more often: ‘Why am I doing this?'”

Wondering what the stores response was when O’Mara called them?  They said they would replace the coffee with a corrected label.

Later in the day on Thanksgiving, the employee who made the labels called the officer and apologized, saying it was meant to be a joke between her and another co-worker. 

“Replace the coffees with the corrected labels?  THAT is their apology?” questioned Sal. 

He thought that was just insulting.

“This is ridiculous.  Your employees insult law enforcement across the country on yet another holiday that they’ve sacrificed time with their families to keep YOUR employees safe – and this is the best you can do?”

Sal and Dana were so upset when they heard what had happened that they took a break from their own Thanksgiving celebrations and drove to one of their locations.  That’s where they packed up a special care package to send to the Green County Police Department.

“We might serve our country in different ways, but these are still my brothers. I’ll stand by their side and show them what appreciation looks like.”

According to Chief O’Mara, who didn’t know about the surprise coming their way from Battle Grounds, the problem is with the attitude people have these days.

“It’s on the individual level. There needs to be a little bit more decency in the world. There needs to be a little bit more common sense from people,” O’Mara said.

Just do the right thing, he said.

“Just dealing with – when we’re dealing every day with anybody – a little courtesy goes a long way.”

Kiefer’s police chief said that regardless of rumors, the officer was by himself when the incident took place. 

According to a spokesperson with Starbucks Corporate, the employee has suspended. He confirmed that they have launched an investigation.

He said the following:

“This is absolutely unacceptable, and we are deeply sorry to the law enforcement officer who experienced this. We have also apologized directly to him and are working to connect with the police chief as well to express our remorse.

The barista has been suspended pending the outcome of our investigation into this matter. This language is offensive to all law enforcement and is not representative of the deep appreciation we have for police officers who work to keep our communities safe.”

Starbucks also made the following comment on Chief O’Mara’s post:

“This is totally unacceptable and offensive to all law enforcement. We are deeply sorry and have apologized directly to the officer who experienced this. We have launched an internal investigation into this matter and our leaders would like to connect with you directly to apologize to you and the entire department.

We invite you to send us a private message so that we may connect you with our leadership.”

Chief O’Mara replied: 

“Starbucks, You’re a corporation trying to sell a product. I’m certain you don’t condone this kind of juvenile activity. The employee made an unfortunate decision which, in turn, negatively effects your company’s image. I appreciate you reaching out to my officer and I also appreciate the employee reaching out and apologizing on her own. Our society needs a touch of old fashioned civility restored. Maybe we could use this bad event and convert it into something better.”

Earlier this year, Sal and Dana ended up in the national headlines for what they did to back an Arizona police department.

Officers from that department were kicked out of a Starbucks because the sight of them triggered a customer into a meltdown.

Battle Grounds Coffee, as a response, pledged to donate 50% of profits from online sales in July to the families of fallen officers through Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.).  Here’s what happened then:

“We woke up this morning and, well, WOW.  We were absolutely BURIED in emails and messages and were completely humbled,” said Sal.

On that particular day, they were getting ready to open the doors of Battle Grounds coffee in Massachusetts on that Saturday in July when they heard the latest news out of a Starbucks in Arizona. They were beyond angry.

Salvatore and Dana DeFranco of Battle Grounds Coffee
Salvatore and Dana DeFranco of Battle Grounds Coffee


Lest you missed it – here’s what happened.

Police enjoying a cup of coffee were kicked out of a Starbucks coffee shop in Tempe, Arizona on the Fourth of July.

Why?  Because a customer complained they “did not feel safe” with the cops present, according to reports.

Did you know that Law Enforcement Today has a private new home for those who support emergency responders and veterans?  It’s called LET Unity, and it’s where we share the untold stories of those patriotic Americans.  Every penny gets reinvested into giving these heroes a voice.  Check it out today.

McDonalds employee hands officer cup of expletive-laced coffee: "f'ing pig"

The five officers were sipping coffee at the Starbucks before their shift started.  That’s when a barista asked them to move out of the complaining customer’s line of sight or else leave.

Battle Grounds Coffee


Sal and Dana were outraged over the news.

“These are men and women who serve and protect our communities every single day.  For someone to say they didn’t feel safe around them is ludicrous,” said Sal.

Dana, who oversees the daily operations at Battle Grounds Coffee, said the core problem was how the store handled it.

“You’re going to kick out five protectors because you have one person who can’t handle reality? Shame on that store.  If that happened in our business, not a single one of those officers would have had a bill… and we would have kicked out the complainer,” said Dana.

Battle Grounds Salvatore and Dana DeFranco
Battle Grounds Salvatore and Dana DeFranco


Sal pointed out the hypocrisy of Starbucks.

“In 2018, two black men who weren’t paying customers were arrested for trespassing after they refused to leave a Starbucks.  Starbucks turned around and closed some 8,000 locations for a business day to conduct ‘racial bias training’.  When does Starbucks plan on closing for a day to train their employees to respect law enforcement and our veterans?”

Dana expanded upon the value system of their company.

“Up until now, we espoused total inclusivity.  We would always welcome ANY paying customer, regardless of their race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religion or profession,” said Dana.  “But this story made us rethink that.  From here on out, there’s personality type we do NOT want coming into our store – jerks.”

Dana and Sal were so upset over the news that they decided to do something about it.  For the entire month of July, they’re donating 50% of profits from ALL of their online sales to Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.), an organization that supports the families of fallen officers.

“These men and women put on a uniform every single day and go into the community to protect us,” Dana said.  “We’re losing far too many of them.  Those are men and women losing their spouses… kids losing their parents… parents losing their kids.  We owe them a debt of gratitude.  And while some ‘coffee chains’ might not respect that, at Battle Grounds Coffee, we do.”

The news went absolutely viral, with emails along with Facebook and Instagram messages flooding in.  So did the orders.  And all of those orders mean money that will end up helping some incredible people.

Here are some of our favorite messages they received:

Joe D. sent this message:

I just wanted to say I appreciate your respect towards law enforcement and wanted to say thank you for your service . I’ve been a Chicago Police Officer for 20 years.
The shit that’s going on in his country is making me sick. I read your article about how your donating 50% of proceeds in July to Cops .
You are a true Patriot and a Hero in my book. God Bless you and good luck with your coffee business. Open one up in Chicago! Do you ship to Chicago just wondering? Stay Safe and MAGA !

An officer who was particularly touched by the move by Battle Grounds sent this message:

Dear Sal,

 I want to thank you for speaking out and backing my brothers and sisters in blue. I have been a law enforcement officer for the past 16 years and I love it. Over the past 6 years though, it has been very tough.

I’ve lost four brothers in blue in the line of duty. Two of my brothers I was close friends with. I read where you are donating 50% of your upcoming sales to the families of the fallen.

I thank you sir for doing that. Thank you for your service to this great country.

Tom from Maryland said:

First thank you sir for your service to our country.  Second, my thanks to you and your wife for your support for the families of deceased law enforcement officers.  

I’m retired law enforcement (33 years) in Maryland, and I’ve seen the change in society’s view of the police.  It’s been very ugly, but folks such as you make the job worth it.  Thank you for all you have done for our country and the blue.

Juan sent in this message on Instagram:

Thank you, thank you for standing up for my brothers and sisters, this means so much to us and just shows that together, we can do and help anyone.  

I have been a C.O.P.S. volunteer for over 15 years after losing 3 friends in the line of duty.  It has not been easy, but with support like this, we can help so many… you are awesome and God bless you.

Kevin wrote in through Instagram as well:

I wish we had one of your shops here in Texas.  I am going to check my finances and if able, am going to go out and buy a handful of Dunkin Donuts gift cards and hand them out in front of a local Starbucks.

They (either directly, or through a complete lack of training and “hands on” with their employees) have done too many crappy things to people in the name of “social justice” and I am DONE with them.

Dana said the show of support just reinforces their “why”.

We wanted Battle Grounds to not just be a coffee shop, but to be a home.  It’s a home for EVERYONE, no matter what they do for work or who they are as an individual.  

But we owe a debt of gratitude to those who keep us safe so that we can create this incredible community.

Sadly, across the country, there are many people who don’t appreciate that sense of security and safety.  People who are angered at the sight of people who put on a uniform to keep them safe.  Individuals who feel as if they are entitled to a “safe space” but believe it will be protected by… their own feelings.

Sal said it’s time Americans toughen up.

“When I was a Navy SEAL, we learned about brotherhood.  We learned about service.  We learned about dedication.  We learned about TOUGHNESS,” said Sal. 

“Men before us… and men and women today… run into the fight to protect those who can’t protect themselves.  And you’re going to be triggered by the sight of a protector?  Give me a break.  Get over yourself.”

Coffee is as much of a passion to Sal and Dana as America and service.  As a matter of fact, it was coffee that saved Sal’s life.

Sal was in a coma for months after an accident when he was in the Navy.  It’s a miracle that he was able to pull out of it.  But his recovery was going slow – too slow.  

“My doctor asked me two things – are you working out?  Are you drinking coffee?  I wasn’t a coffee drinker, but my doctor pointed out that it was a natural upper,” said Sal.

Dana said that’s when the transformation happened.

“We started researching coffee and this new passion brought us together,” she said.  “We found it was helping his recovery, was helping our marriage and would be a mission for the two of us that we could use to continue a life of service – this time to bringing communities together.”

Now Sal and Dana use their coffee shop to give back to others.  They are involved in countless community organizations and non-profits. They spend their free time supporting numerous causes, and over the past couple of years Sal has been asked to travel across the country to give keynote speeches on his story.

(Above: Salvatore DeFranco from Battle Grounds Coffee speaks to wounded officers in Texas about PTSD.)


“Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.) is one of the best organizations we’ve found in America to support law enforcement,” Sal said.  “While companies like Starbucks spit in the face of our police officers… we are proud to be able to donate 50% of our profits from online sales this month to a group that actually stands behind those officers.”

To learn more about their brand and their products, click here.

In the meantime, the Tempe Officers Association isn’t backing down when it comes to going after Starbucks.

Rob Ferraro is the president of the police union.  He said things like these seem to be happening more and more these days.

“It’s become accepted to not trust or to see police and think that we’re not here to serve you, and again, it goes back to — we take great pride of the level of customer service we provide to citizens, and to be looked at as feeling unsafe when you have law enforcement around you is somewhat perplexing to me,” Ferraro said.

The police union also took to Twitter to post a series of messages about what happened.

Cops: We were kicked out of Starbucks because a customer “didn’t feel safe” around us

“This treatment of public safety workers could not be more disheartening,” the union wrote. “While the barista was polite, making such a request at all was offensive. Unfortunately, such treatment has become all too common in 2019.”

The union puts the blame square on the individual store, not the Starbucks corporate.  The union added that it looked forward “to working collaboratively with them on this important dialogue.”


On Twitter Friday, the union shared a parody of the Starbucks logo, with the words “Dump Starbucks” and the image of a hand dumping the contents of a cup of coffee.

Starbucks said through a spokesman that the company is still piecing together just what happened.

A Starbucks spokesman told the Arizona Republic the company was still gathering details about what happened.

“We have a deep respect for the Tempe Police and their service to the community,” spokesman Reggie Borges said. “We’ve reached out to the Tempe Police Department and Tempe Officers Association to better understand what happened and apologize. We want everyone in our stores to feel welcomed and the incident described is not indicative of what we want any of our customers to feel in our stores.”

Starbucks wouldn’t say if the barista would be disciplined, but they also didn’t identify the barista or the customer.

As Sal pointing out, here’s what happened with Starbucks in 2018.

Two black men were arrested for trespassing after they refused to leave a Starbucks.  They weren’t paying customers.  As a result, the Philadelphia police commissioner issued an apology to the men.  Then Starbucks closed some 8,000 locations for a business day to conduct “racial bias training”.

Perhaps Starbucks can help us understand the hypocrisy.  One of their employees called the police because people who weren’t paying customers were taking up space and refused to leave private property.  Police responded and did what was asked of them – and what they were legally justified in doing.

In response, we see an entire company shut down to train employees in how police are bad, everyone is racist and we need to make sure everyone feels good.

On the flip side, we see spreading incidents across the country where police officers are being kicked out of the shops that are in the very communities these cops serve and protect.  And yet Starbucks, instead of doing the right thing, hides the identity of the baristas and gives just a generic blanket apology.

In the training that happened during that national day of shut down, baristas were given a 68-page guide where they were asked to respond to writing prompts with various scenarios. 

“It felt like we were off task the entire time because we didn’t reflect on the situation itself,” said one Barista, referring to the incident involving the two people arrested for trespassing. “The training materials focused a lot on police brutality, which had nothing to do with the incident that happened.”

Another attendee said the from Starbucks who were running the session only talked about the incident only when attendees asked about it.  Instead, according to another barista, it was anti-police propaganda:

“The videos of cops knocking people down and fighting people were really disturbing,” Tina explained. “I told them I didn’t like the video and they told me they understood and that I was open to give my opinion.” What does watching videos about police brutality have to do with the situation that happened, Tina said she kept asking herself. “They went too deep into it and missed the point all at the same time.”

“At one point,” said Jamie, “a girl at my table actually had to get up and leave because video after video they showed black people being assaulted by police or black people being verbally assaulted and white people being racially biased toward people of color. It offended her. She left after that.”

Here’s one of the videos Starbucks showed its employees: 

Why aren’t they shutting down every location to train employees on “bias training against law enforcement”?  

Why do they pander to those who break the law and give the proverbial bird to those who enforce it?

If Starbucks is serious about protecting against discrimination, then they have no choice but to shut down every single location for a day to train employees on how to protect those who protect them.

Then again… that doesn’t fit their corporate agenda, now does it?

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