SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio police officer was asked to leave a restaurant on Saturday because he was carrying his police-issued handgun, according to the San Antonio Police Officers Association.
The officer was at Fogo de Chao Brazilian Steakhouse when the manager asked him to leave, reported SAPOA.
SAPOA added that although the officer knew his legal rights to carry his weapon, he left the restaurant to avoid a disturbance for other diners.
The association reported that the restaurant has apologized for the incident and acknowledged that “a member of our team made the wrong call,” and that they “support, respect, and appreciate everything our law enforcement does to keep each and every one of us safe, day in and day out.”
The President of the San Antonio Police Officers Association, Michael Helle, issued a statement saying, “We thank the owners of Fogo de Chao Brazilian Steakhouse for acknowledging the mistake by one of their employees and for issuing a statement in support of San Antonio Police Officer. While we hope this wasn’t an example of anti-police bias, at the very least this incident shows that public-serving establishments need to be better educated about state gun laws, particularly as they apply to Police Officers.”
As stated in the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, “An establishment serving the public may not prohibit or otherwise restrict a peace officer of special investigator from carrying on the establishment’s premises a weapon that the peace officer or special investigator is otherwise authorized to carry, regardless of whether the peace officer or special investigator is engaged in the actual discharge of the officer’s or investigator’s duties while carrying the weapon.”
The Texas Code of Criminal Procedure also added that the meaning of “Establishment serving the public” includes:
- Hotels, motels, or other places of lodging;
- Restaurants or other places where food is offered for sale to the public;
- Retail businesses or other commercial establishments or an office building to which the general public is invited;
- Sports venue; and
- Any other places of public accommodation, amusement, convenience, or resort to which the general public or any classification of persons from the general public is regularly, normally, or customarily invited.
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