(Associated Press) Authorities say a police officer who stopped at a McDonald’s restaurant on his way to work was handed a coffee with an expletive and the word “pig” written on it.
Herington Police Chief Brian Hornaday said in a Facebook post that one of his officers was headed to work Saturday when he stopped at the McDonald’s drive through in Junction City, which is near Fort Riley. Hornaday wrote the officer was offered a “free lunch” and that “A Big Mac and large fries doesn’t make up for it.” He said the officer has never met the McDonald’s employee.
“This behavior has been, is and always will be wrong,” Hornaday said.
Police in Junction City said in a Facebook post that the department is “upset this occurred” but said it does not represent how the majority of people in the community feel about law enforcement.
The sheriff’s office in Geary County, where Junction City is located, said that in “a show of faith,” the sheriff and some of his command staff will be visiting the McDonald’s on Monday morning to have a cup of coffee.
“We dont know the whole story and are saddened by seeing this incident in our community,” the post said. “However, we at the Geary County Sheriff’s Office, believe this was an isolated incident and have faith in management at McDonald’s to get to the bottom of the situation.”
UPDATE (Dec 30, 2019 3:37PM): McDonald’s is disputing allegations that one of the restaurant’s workers wrote an expletive and the word “pig” on a coffee cup that was given to a Kansas police officer who stopped there on his way to work.
Dana Cook, the owner of a McDonald’s in Junction City, said in a written statement that the restaurant has security video that proves none of its employees wrote the words. Cook did not speculate about who may have written them before Herington’s police chief posted a picture of the cup on Facebook.
Chief Brian Hornaday’s Facebook post about the cup has since been removed and he now says he’s “looking further into this matter” with McDonald’s.
In the Facebook post, he said one of his officers was handed the cup Saturday when he went through the McDonald’s drive-through in Junction City, which is near Fort Riley.
“This behavior has been, is and always will be wrong,” Hornaday said in his initial post.
He didn’t immediately return an email message Monday from The Associated Press.
But he told WIBW-TV that his reaction after the initial report was based on believing that a police officer has integrity “and it would be foolish of any law enforcement agency or professional to not take the word of their police officer until they can be proven otherwise.”
The officer involved in the incident has been with the department for only two months, but spent five years as a military police officer in the Army, Hornaday said.
The chief said McDonald’s and his department are working together to investigate. He asked for patience as the investigation continues.
“Judgment is something that should be made at the end after all evidence and all facts have been gathered and presented,” he said.
McDonald’s corporate media didn’t answer question, instead directing people to look at the owner’s statement.
“My McDonald’s have the utmost respect for all members of law enforcement and the military and were troubled by the accusation made,” Cook wrote in the statement. “We thoroughly reviewed our security video from every angle, which clearly shows the words were not written by one of our employees. We look forward to working with Chief Hornaday as he continues his investigation.”