MANASSAS, Va. (WUSA) - Eight plainclothes police officers carryingguns were asked to leave the Buffalo Wild Wings in Manassas because ofits "no guns" policy.
Now, the restaurant chain has issued an apology and more. RegionalManager Philip Rossi says the company has a good relationship with thecommunity and welcomes all law enforcement officers, with or withoutguns.
Rossi says the manager knew they were officers when he asked them toleave. The officers were all wearing identification. The problem,Rossi says, is that the manager didn't realize the company's "no guns"policy excluded police officers, even plain clothes officers.
The restaurant has put up blue and white balloons in support ofpolice and has pledged to donate 10 percent of Wednesday's sales to thenon-profit Law Enforcement United which helps the children of fallenofficers.
Prince William County Officer Jarad Phelps came to the Buffalo WildWings for lunch on Wednesday, but also to thank them for the donations andtheir apology.
Phelps, speaking as an individual says about the mishap, "Thought itwas a mistake, that's all. It's one of those unfortunate things thathappens."
Customers we talked to feel the same way and appreciate the restaurant's pledge of support to Law Enforcement United.
"That's fantastic. I mean that makes sense. That's the way a goodcompany responds. They knew there was something wrong and they wantedto make an effort and I think that makes sense."
It used to be illegal for non-law enforcement to carry a gun into arestaurant in Virginia. In 2010, lawmakers reversed that, requiringthat people carrying guns don't drink alcohol in the establishments.However, restaurants can have their own "no guns" policy, like BuffaloWild Wings does.
Joy Diaz says she likes the no guns policy and wishes morerestaurants would have it. She says it makes her uncomfortable seeingsomeone carrying a gun because there's been a lot of crime around and,"you never know."
However, she's fine if she knows it's a police officer with a gun and now, so is Buffalo Wild Wings.
The company is based in Minneapolis and has about 900 restaurants across the country.