Rocky Mount, VA – Two Cook Out restaurant employees have been fired after refusing to serve two Franklin County sheriff’s deputies who came to the fast-food joint’s drive-thru over the weekend.
Details about the incident were posted to Facebook on Monday and quickly spread.
According to the post, two Franklin County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) deputies went to the Cook Out restaurant on Sunday night and tried to place an order in the drive-thru.
“They waited in line for 32 minutes at the drive thru,” the post read. “They let everyone else go pass them to the point that Steve went to the window to ask the reason why his order was not being taken!!”
The employees allegedly ignored him completely, refusing to “even look at him,” according to the post.
“He asked why they were refusing service and they had no answer for him, he asked if it was because he was in a police car, he asked to speak to the manager,” the post read.
But the manager never made an appearance.
FCSO released a statement confirming the incident on Tuesday, the Smith Mountain Eagle reported.
“The corporate office of this establishment was contacted, and we are confident that this business will investigate and address the situation appropriately,” the department said. “We ask that citizens not rush to judgement and give the restaurant the ability to thoroughly investigate the circumstances behind the incident.”
“It is our hope that this situation was simply the action of one or two persons and not supported by the restaurant or its management team,” the FCSO added.
Cook Out also released a statement in the wake of the Facebook post, the Smith Mountain Eagle reported.
The fast-food restaurant apologized for the “extremely” long wait times customers experienced during the holiday weekend, and said the Rocky Mount location was understaffed at the time, resulting in “unacceptable” service.
“We are truly sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused our customers,” the company said.
Cook Out announced on Wednesday that it fired a manager and a cashier in connection with the way the two FCSO deputies were treated, the Smith Mountain Eagle reported.
“As a result of our internal investigation into the complaints at the Rocky Mount, VA store, we found evidence of extremely long wait times and failure to greet many guests within an acceptable amount of time over the holiday weekend,” the company said.
“These guests of the Rocky Mount, VA location included 2 law enforcement officers who asked the cashier if a manager was there. The cashier did not go and get the manager and the manager did not make himself available to speak to the officers,” Cook Out explained.
The company said that the employees’ actions “do not reflect the principles” of the fast-food chain and were “in direct conflict with our policy,” WSET reported.
“We are thankful and it is our honor to serve the Sheriff’s department and all our guests in the Rocky Mount, VA area,” Cook Out said. “Our goal is to serve all of our guests great food with fast service and add joy to every customer’s day.”