Photo provided by Jordan Harkins.
MCDONOUGH, Ga. - A Walmart in McDonough has come under fire for refusing to bake a cake for a retired police officer. The officer, who didn't want to be identified, is retiring from a metro Atlanta police department after 25 years on the force.
The officer's daughter, Jordan Harkins, was planning a surprise retirement party for her father. She tried to place her cake order at the Walmart bakery on Thursday.
She requested a “Thin Blue Line” police themed cake
“I went in and showed the first lady I talked to the Blue Line flag and she said ‘I'm not really sure if we're going to be able to make that.’ She grabbed a co-worker and she said, ‘I'm not sure because it could be perceived as racist,’” said Harkins.
Harkins said she then spoke with a third employee who said she didn't feel comfortable making the cake and would talk to the manager "to see if they were allowed."
Harkins said the bakery called her a short time later, and said the store manager agreed with their decision. “I was shocked really, because I didn't know what to say, what to do. I didn't expect that at all. I just expected to walk in, show them the cake, that it would be done.”
One of Harkins' friends posted about the incident on social media after hearing what happened. Walmart reached out to the family soon after and agreed to make the cake for free.
Walmart spokesman Leslee Wright issued a written statement saying, “Our goal is to always take care of customers. But, sometimes we misstep. We're glad we were able to connect with the family to apologize and make this right.”
Harkins isn't sure they can. “It's just disappointing, that they don't support law enforcement enough. They wouldn't even make a cake so it was just really disappointing.”