Starbucks issued an apology on Saturday after a police union said several officers were booted from an Arizona store on the Fourth of July by a barista who said a customer “did not feel safe by their presence.” The coffee chain said it has “deep respect for the Tempe Police Department” and apologized for “any misunderstanding or inappropriate behavior that may have taken place.” Reggie Borges, a spokesperson for Starbucks, also told the Arizona Republic that the company is still gathering details about the incident. “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.”
The Tempe Officers Association released a statement earlier this week saying six officers had been drinking coffee before their shift at a Starbucks when a barista asked them to either move out of the customer's line of sight or leave. “While the barista was polite, making such a request at all was offensive. Unfortunately, such treatment has become all too common in 2019,” the association tweeted.