On Monday, Melinda Power, a city inspector, entered Jaguar Power Sports to issue a written warning citation to the business, stating that their rooftop display violated city code. The display included flags representing each military branch, which Power said wasn’t permitted. While delivering the citation, Power reportedly insulted a customer, who turned out to be a veteran.
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The incident was captured by surveillance cameras in Jaguar Power Sports in Jacksonville, Florida.
Power came in to issue a citation for a rooftop flag display which included two US flags, one Jacksonville Jaguars NFL team flag, and a set of military flags.
According to a report by News 4 Jax, the military flags were the ones that Power stated violated the code.
“We cater to our men and women, both retired and active duty military, so it was personal,” said store manager Marcy Moyer regarding the citation. “We felt like it was a personal attack.”
As Power delivered the news, a male customer, who is a military veteran, became upset, saying that he thought it was wrong for the city to force the managers of the store to remove the flags.
After being confronted by the customer, Power got into the veteran’s face.
Speaking about the incident, Jaguar Power Sports employee Katie Klasse stated, “She says, ‘What did you do for this country?’ He says, “I took three bullets to the leg. I almost lost my life for this country. I’m retired. I’m a veteran.’”
“She gets in his face this close,” Klasse continued, “and says, ‘You did nothing for this country.’”
Word of the incident spread quickly, including through a Facebook post on Jaguar Power Sports page, leading Mayor Lenny Curry to send out two tweets addressing the matter.
“1. I have directed city staff that military flags should be treated the same as US flag,” said Curry in the first tweet. “Let them fly. I have reached out to the business owner & will review employee procedures. COJ employees r expected to be respectful of our customers – you, the people of Jacksonville.”
“2. We support our military and veterans, and we appreciate businesses who honor their service,” said the second tweet.
Jaguar Power Sports was able to tear up the citation and continue flying the military flags.
According to Brian Hughes, Curry’s chief of staff, the city inspector’s actions are being investigated.