North Carolina deputy turned away from jewelry store for wearing service weapon, sheriff says

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STATESVILLE, N.C. — An Iredell County sheriff’s deputy was turned away at Kay Jewelers in Statesville because he was wearing his service weapon, according to Sheriff Darren Campbell.

Campbell said in a Facebook post Wednesday the deputy was on his lunch break Tuesday and went to pick up an engagement ring from the Kay Jewelers on Turnersburg Highway.

“The deputy took his meal break to pick up the ring, and was met at the door by the store manager, who informed him he was not allowed to wear his service weapon while on their premises,” Campbell wrote. “The deputy informed the manager he was in uniform and his marked patrol car was in the parking lot, and it would be a violation of policy for him to remove his service weapon while in uniform.”

The manager told the deputy he would have to come back to the store another time when he was not armed, Campbell said.

Campbell said the policy requiring the deputy to keep his service weapon on while in uniform “is in place for not only the safety of the deputy, but the general public as well.”

Campbell said the sheriff’s office was “deeply saddened” by the situation.

Kay Jewelers responded to the sheriff’s Facebook post, writing:

“Kay Jewelers is reaching out to the customer and the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office to sincerely apologize for the mishandling of this matter.

“We have tremendous respect for law enforcement, and we thank the Office for bringing this to our attention.

“We will be sure to reinforce store training regarding our firearm policy with specific regard to uniformed law enforcement.”

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