Police officer turned away from Chuck E. Cheese's for carrying firearm

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- In Kentucky, state law allowed businesses to post "No Firearms" signs on their doors and windows, but when the Bowling Green location of Chuck E. Cheese's would't allow a police officer to carry her firearm in their store, people were outraged.

"I was upset, I was shocked for that officer and also for all the patrons there because you know if you have an obvious police officer and they're wearing police clothing, then I don't understand what the problem would be having someone like that with the training and experience of a police officer into an establishment," said Edmonson County Sheriff Shane Doyle.

But Chuck E. Cheese's national headquarters said the entire situation was a misunderstanding.

"Our firearms policy does not apply to officers in uniform. We do have a firearms policy for civilians and off duty non-uniformed officers, but officers in uniform are always welcome to bring in their firearms," said Chuck E. Cheese's headquarters Public Relations Chair Alexis Lynn.

But what is considered a uniform? The officer was wearing a marked police polo shirt, which Doyle said should've been enough to satisfy employees.

"I've seen Bowling Green officers in polos many times in my history working in law enforcement, and obviously I recognize that person as a sworn employee."

Beyond that, Doyle also said that Kentucky State Law permitted police officers to carry their weapon in most locations regardless of whether they were on duty or not.

"Kentucky State Law allows us to carry anywhere in the state of Kentucky except for federal buildings and that's basically the only place."

Even though Chuck E. Cheese's said it was nothing more than an employee who misinterpreted their policy, Kentucky Conceal and Carry Instructor Deborah Williams said she wasn't any less offended after hearing the corporation's apology.

"That's a training issue. I think that, that one mistake in this day and time can make a huge difference on a business and they need to understand that can hurt them badly."

With over 200,000 licensed conceal and carry holders in the state of Kentucky, that was a distinct possibility. But Doyle said while he thought there should have been a manager on site who clearly understood the policy and couldn't corrected it, he wasn't necessarily going to stop taking his kids to the restaurant.

"Chuck E. Cheese's is a great establishment, been around a long time and like I said my family we go to Chuck E. Cheese's on a regular basis and I'm not going to say I'm never going to go since they've corrected this issue and they've come out with what their actual policy is, that's fine I'm not going to boycott that restaurant. But everybody needs to be aware of what the laws are and everybody needs to understand that somebody who is trained and qualified to carry a weapon, they're there to help people."




 
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