Home News "You can't use the bathroom:" Starbucks 'Barista' tries to humiliate police officer

"You can't use the bathroom:" Starbucks 'Barista' tries to humiliate police officer

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A Starbucks ‘Barista’ in downtown Philadelphia apparently couldn’t resist the opportunity to try and embarrass a police officer, denying him use of a restroom. Now, a facebook post about the incident by the sergeant involved, and shared by fellow officer Joe Leighthardt, is going viral.

Of particular ire in this situation isn’t just that the Sgt. wasn’t allowed to use the restroom, but that the ‘Barista’ made a point to announce to the store that she wasn’t going to let a cop use the bathroom, which is locked by a key code.

Below is the post, in full, that is causing Starbucks to attempt to reach the unnamed sergeant involved to hear the story from him directly. NBC10 is reporting that the sergeant is in contact with the company.

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You can see the original Facebook post here.

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53 COMMENTS

    • @susan cochran While this is completely unacceptable, the company itself does not support what the barista did. In fact they’re trying to make reconciliations with the police officer. I am sure this particular barista has lost her job due to the circumstance. I do not thin it is right to judge a company based upon one individual. Just like it is not right for people to judge all police officers based upon the actions of one or a few individuals.

    • I THINK IT IS MORE FITTING TO COMPLAIN TO CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS AND SEE IF STARBUCKS TAKES ANY ACTION AGAINST THIS “RUDE “EMPLOYEE. SHE OBVIOUSLY HAS ISSUES THAT SHE HAS CHOSEN TO BRING TO HER JOB. I AM A VETERAN LEO AND A STARBUCKS STOCKHOLDER. I DON’T PATRONIZE STARBUCKS GENERALLY, BUT I DON’T THINK A BOYCOTT IS IN ORDER YET EITHER.

    • First you are mad at Starbucks for one persons actions.. That is a stupidest thing I have read today. Its the same thing as not going to church because a Priest inappropriately touched a little boy. My point is you can’t blame Starbucks for this blame the person and frankly this is a cops #firstworldproblem The dude needs to stop crying and move on with his day not hang out on Facebook.

    • THE BITCH NEEDS TO BE FIRED! WHO DOES SHE THINK SHE IS? THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOR! NOW I CAN SEE WHY PEOPLE ARE BOYCOTTING STARBUCKS! THIS IS DISGRACEFUL AND DISRESPECTFUL!

  1. Why should cops get special treatment? The store has a policy, the store needs to enforce the policy. If I tell a black kid that he needs a shirt on in my store, but then let a shirtless white kid in, I’d be up for a lawsuit.

    Cops have changed and thus people’s perception of cops have changed. Change your expectations.

    • You are an ass sir. The officer’s car is his office which has no restroom. Let’s hope you never need assistance from the police while the poor guy is hunting for a restroom before he responds to your call.

    • You are a moron! Perhaps it’s different for cops than the regular public because of the fact that police officers are driving around in squad cars and don’t have bathrooms in their cars!!! Where would you like the officers to use the washroom?!?? So you would rather have a police officer have to drive back to the station to use the washroom taking up more time opposed to using the closest washroom at a restaurant? Yet You would be bitching and complaining that the cop was taking too much time (driving back to the station first to use
      The washroom before he was able to respond to a call)mto attend to your bullshit of your baby daddy (or baby momma) drama because people like you and the bitch from Starbucks are inconsiderate assholes!!

    • I agree with you – this poor girl shouldn’t lose her job, or be treated like a monster just because she was possibly following a policy that her manager put in place. I agree that most cops are wonderful people, who provide a service to us all. But I also do not believe someone should lose their job or be punished for following what has been established as a rule.

    • You’re an idiot. Cops on duty do not have the luxury of always having a restroom for their use during their shift depending on where their calls for service take them. Most businesses get that and don’t expect officers to spend money to use their restrooms. Most folks working every day don’t face this inconvenience since they’re provided with a restroom to use where they work.

  2. Good for the barista! You cops will not hesitate to arrest us or ticket us for the stupidest things and force us to follow silly rules “because its my job”… so here is a taste of your own medicine! She was just doing her job. Your clown uniform and special shiny badge does not make you above anyone else, and you arrogant, bullying, punishing behavior is losing you supporters by the minute.

  3. “Young blonde liberal”. Because, sure, you know somebody’s political affiliation by the fact that she doesn’t like you. The fact that you immediately jump to politics says a lot more about you than it does about her.

    Oh, poor police officer doesn’t get *special* treatment, so of course it’s all part of a liberal conspiracy. Were you a paying customer? No, you weren’t. Maybe if cops didn’t *expect* special treatment, and didn’t think that they were somehow entitled to more rights than everybody else, public outrage against cops wouldn’t be as strong as it is right now.

  4. This story is bogus or embellished. Businesses have always had a “restrooms are for customer use only” policy. No pay, no pee.

    How does the author know the political leanings of the cashier? Its just wording used to inflame.

    If you think this is news, you have lost some grasp on what is important.

  5. I was not a fan of Starbucks, and this just reinforces it. I will never patronize a Starbucks. There are plenty of small coffee shops that are independently owned in my area. They are respectful and will get my business.

  6. Starbucks should fire her. There is enough stupidity without dissing those who are there to protect us. Same goes for that idiot lady saying she was right. Hope you both don’t need cops soon. just tell the robber/rapist to “respect” you!

  7. Well, you (collectively) deserved it.

    1. Your fellows commit crimes in which no punishment is meted out.
    2. You protect each other for those very crimes you perpetrate.
    3. You are legally ‘allowed’ to steal, and charge property in which we have no good recourse
    4. And if honorable police come forward to oust a sadist police officer, the whole force goes after them.
    5. And if a case is brought to grand jury, the prosecutor will throw the case.

    So yeah, there’s enough just reasons. Or that, if all you have is a gun, every solution to a problem is a gun…

    Or Guns don’t kill people, police officers with guns kill people. Black people. And White people too.

  8. I posted this directly to his wall like most adults do.

    There is a policy saying that the restroom is for customers only. This was explained to you and you didn’t think the rule applied to you or that you should have to follow it. I think the clerk was being a bitch about it but that was what policy says not something she decided.

    Personally although she enjoyed enforcing the policy way too much you should apologize to the woman for making a stink about her not violating policy to appease you.

    I mean it comes down to you whining and not wanting people to go there because they have a policy that washrooms are for customers only and actually enforced it.

    • What if you were a police officer and you were assigned a walking beat or you were told to stay in your assigned area to maintain high visability? What if it were your son, daughter, mother or father? What is the officer supposed to do? Defecate or urinate in the street? In my city, businesses that serve alcoholic beverages are required to allow officers to use their phones and restrooms or suffer possible revocation of their license.

      • Well, according to the person who wrote this, the Starbucks employee did tell him where he could find a restroom to use since he was unwilling to be a paying customer at the establishment she works at, so he was not being forced to defecate/urinate in the street. And even if the city this happened in did have a law like you mentioned last time I checked, Starbucks is a coffee shop…not a bar. HTH

        (and for the record, I do think she was bitchy how she handled it, but when the officer was informed he needed to buy something to use the restroom he should have either done so or went elsewhere)

    • Another cop hater. If that was joe blow, I would agree, move on, but to belittle a cop for their own amusement and for the other employees not to say anything that says a lot to me. It wasn’t just the one, it was everybody who witnessed it and didn’t do the right thing.

      As far as it should apply to police officers too. Okay so a police officer’s office is his police car. He goes from call to call sometimes and doesn’t get a chance to use the restroom. Do you want him to pull over somewhere and use the local vegetation.? Do you want him to go to the station, which could be miles from his area of responsibility? If so I feel sorry for your lost souls. Most people have a bathroom readily available to them at their place of work. The ones that don’t are subject to what’s available. Oh and by the way, I’m sure that cop has purchased a few coffees from Starbucks before so I would say yeah he is a paying customer so quit being so stupid. I know it sucks getting a ticket, but I deserved the ones I got. I didn’t like it, but it was my actions that brought the ticket upon myself and he was only doing his job, like we need to do ours do all you cop haters shut the f$&@ up!

  9. This is so insulting. I don’t know which is worse, the employee or the people standing by doing nothing. I refused to go to Starbucks after an incident with the military. This just proves my decision correct.

  10. IM from Norway and its a world wide trend it seems like.
    Its embarrasing to see friends on facebook post short edited videos about police brutality and then when the real story comes out they dont even acknowlegde their error.

    Stay safe! Greetings from Norway!

  11. If I was there and witnessed this I would have immediately called for the manager – offered to purchase the policeman a cup of coffee and paid for it myself and told her that if she didn’t open the door she would be cleaning up the floor with the cups of coffee I would purchase and then dump on the floor as I walked out in disgust.

  12. I cannot imagine any person treating another person in this manner. Starbucks obviously doesn’t hire people…they hire assholes.

    • of sure you do, you endorse the badges doing every day, calling people drunks and saying they are carrying open containers and when the cops are proven wrong about their lies, you say they are just doing their job, same as the girl behind the counter so why is it you feel the cops can do there job but whine when she does hers? bigoted much? how is it acceptable for the cops to do the exact same thing and expect no backlash for what they do? simple matter of pot and kettle

  13. not that I have patronized starbucks all that much in the past, I’ll never step inside one ever again. There are plenty of local coffee shops that I can get over-charged for a cup of coffee. I don’t need to give my hard earned cash to starbucks. and the bitch behind the counter needs to be fired.

  14. The way it ‘s written and worded leads me to believe it’s a hoax. Maybe not, but I’m pretty sure. If you’ve researched similar stuff it’s pretty formulaic. Some of the giveaways include “It’s hip to berate and disrespect officers in public.” Does it happen sure. Is it hip, no Is it a prevalent line of thought or course of action among you folks today, nope. Does it get folks emotionally fired up and ready to consume the rest of the post hook, line and sinker without critical observation or questions, yup. Statements like “today’s generation” are pretty much a dead give away you’re about to be asked to sympathize with the poster and long for the good ole days. Also the fact the female character is described as the “blonde liberal” is a clue you’re being setup (cuz we all know liberals hate cops and don’t go to church). Conversely, maybe she is a free market conservative who thinks if you don’t purchase a service you don’t get to use that service. She might not want any free loading socialists peeing with other people’s money (um… even though that is how we pay for the police, and firefighters and the military and the highways, you know…with other people’s money, each example a socialist conspiracy in its own right). Either she’s a disrespectful shit or she isn’t. Political affiliation has nothing to do with the described issue. And the final emotional, draw-you-in, clincher are the folks standing by doing nothing, not standing up to this outrageous monster of a liberal. You can only agree what a sad state of affairs the country is in……….. Just my two bits and please remember appreciating, honoring, and respecting law enforcement officers is not incompatible with expecting accountability.

  15. I can tell you this is ABSOLUTELY NOT the Starbucks policy. This was a lone employee. If this allegation is found to be true I can assure you that employee will have their employment terminated.

  16. I work for starbucks in New york, we go above and beyond for police officers. It is unfair to label every Starbucks employee as disrespectful to the police department for the ignorance of one worker. It’s not right for every partner to be held accountable for one person’s actions and it is certainly unfair to demoralize a whole company for one such action.

  17. I am so sorry that cops are going through such incredible negative press by an hugely biased and liberal media. The daily support and service that police officers, fire dept and all military personnel provide to us invaluable. I wish I could thank them on a daily basis, and I do when I get a chance.

    Starbucks – and in conjunction to their support of other not so moral things – has lost my patronage for good.

  18. Really? Are you really never going to go to starbucks again every anywhere EVER because of an article on the internet? Because of something that happened not to you or anyone you know or even in the town where you live? Just because of one instance that for all you know is fictional or hugely exaggerated? Many businesses have a policy such as this. Perhaps this was this stores policy?? How do you know? Fine, please never visit any starbucks ever again based on something you read on the internet. Sounds completely reasonable.

  19. If he wasn’t a paying customer then why is he entitled to use the bathroom?
    Because he’s a police officer?
    What kind of equal society does that promote?
    If a lawyer of doctor or politician asked what should the answer be? What if a garbage man who’s job is also very important to society asked? Is he also entitled? No. Then what makes a police officer any different?
    Because they put their life on the line every day? Okay well it was their choice to choose that proffession.
    They should choose to be in the force because of their beliefs and to serve society and not for special treatment. No sympathy what so ever.
    I personally don’t use Starbucks because of other moral reasons but this arrogant sense of entitlement is pathetic.

  20. I worked at Starbucks for nearly a year, and nobody was ever required to buy something before using the restroom. Although the excuse she came up with was a bit silly, it was better than causing a scene. Personally, I would’ve just unlocked it for him and continued on about my business. While I have not heard of that policy, I can, however, say that she broke 1 policy as well as the Starbucks motto with the way she handled that situation. The location that I worked at would be very disappointed if an employee were to treat anybody like that.

  21. Whaaaaaa. Poor baby didn’t get special treatment for wearing his costume.
    Suck it up buttercup. Your costume doesn’t grant you special privileges. Rules are there for a reason. As a police officer, you of all people should have some respect for someone “just doing their job” and following the rules.

  22. Aside from the obvious cop haters who most likely had to spend some time in lockup for whatever reason, it was wrong to deny an officer of the law whose responsibility is to make sure little snot nosed cunts like the barista at starbucks never have to get raped, robbed or murdered, a small gesture of kindness like using the bathroom at a public restaurant.

    starbucks has always been overrated and reports like this one and the ones of baristas robbing customers of their credit card information only cement my insistence of never patronizing any of their stores.

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