6 police officers say Starbucks barista told them to leave. Now #DumpStarbucks is trending

@ToaAz / Twitter Don 39 t appreciate Starbucks asking 1562524561.jpg...
@ToaAz / Twitter

First things first: There’s some context missing around the now viral #DumpStarbucks trend. But we do know for sure is the following. 6 police officers in Tempe, Arizona say that after they purchased drinks at a local Starbucks, a barista asked them to either move out of a customer’s sight or leave the establishment entirely because the customer felt “uncomfortable.” The officers left the store—then a tweet from the Tempe Officers Association about the alleged incident went viral.

As you can see in the image above, the #DumpStarbucks trend was born.

This happened on the Fourth of July, and more details have come out, though still not the full picture. On July 6, Sylvia Moir, the Tempe Chief of Police, tweeted the following:

What “narrative about police”? It’s unclear. But what is clear is police violence and brutality make many communities (and even individuals outside of those highly impacted communities) wary of the police. Along with physical violence, racial profiling and police brutality have documented impacts on the mental health of communities that face exceptionally high rates. Trauma is real.

Of course, it’s also possible that this situation centered on specifics with the customer in question and law enforcement. Or even that the tension stemmed from an entirely personal conflict, and being on the job was merely a coincidence. It’s all still very unclear.

Starbucks has responded in a few different ways on various platforms. For example, the Starbucks executive vice president and president of U.S. Retail, Rossann Williams, made a statement on the Starbucks website, apologizing to the officers.

“On behalf of Starbucks, I want to sincerely apologize to you all for the experience that six of your officers had in our store on July 4,” the statement reads. She noted that she “will be in Tempe this evening and welcome the opportunity to meet with any of you in person to address concerns or questions.”

As reported by CBS Phoenix affiliate KPHO, Starbucks issued a statement saying, in part, that they are attempting to, “better understand what took place and apologize for any misunderstandings or inappropriate behavior that may have taken place.”

And how has the general public reacted? Well, let’s check out some gems from the #DumpStarbucks Twitter trend…

Many people are arguing that boycotting Starbucks is just another way of avoiding what might be the underlying issue in the situation…

But plenty of people seem into the Starbucks boycott. Here are some of their rationales…

Surprising no one, Tomi Lahren weighed in pretty early:

Phew. What do you think?

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4 Comments on "6 police officers say Starbucks barista told them to leave. Now #DumpStarbucks is trending"

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L. Johnson
L. Johnson

These particular police might be totally innocent of the offenses by some police. I don’t think it’s fair to color them with a broad brush anymore than it is for any other group for people. I DO have experiences that make me wary occasionally, but I do not swell on it. For the most part, the police provide am much needed service to our communities. As far as race goes, we have many black officers, too.


I’d like to hear exactly what happened. Reserving judgement until then.

L. Johnson
L. Johnson

Always a good idea to be fully informed before making a decision. I agree.


Wait two black men had the same issue and there wasn’t a hashtag movement then