Texas Police Department Rejects Gift From Conservative Christian Company, Patriot Mobile

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A Texas police department rejected a pizza party donated by Patriot Mobile after receiving public backlash on social media for accepting a gift from the conservative Christian company.

Patriot Mobile on Tuesday requested that the Grapevine Police Department donate the $1,500 gift to another department in North Texas.

“If Grapevine continues to reject the donation, Patriot Mobile asks that it be given to another police department in North Texas,” the company said on Tuesday in a news release.

On Thursday, Patriot Mobile delivered a Cane Rosso restaurant gift card to Grapevine Police Department (GPD) as a gesture of gratitude for their service to the community.

“The Patriot Mobile team was blessed to visit the Grapevine Police Department to give them a pizza party gift card to Cane Rosso! It was wonderful to meet our local police officers. We’re so grateful for the work our law enforcement does every day to keep us safe in our community,” Patriot Mobile wrote on social media.

“At Patriot Mobile, we will always support our law enforcement!” it continued, adding the hashtag #backtheblue.

The company said it had purchased the $1,500 restaurant gift card at a recent fundraiser benefiting fallen soldiers, adding that it paid $2,575 during an auction at the event.

“Patriot Mobile’s intention, when purchasing the gift certificate at an auction that benefits families of fallen soldiers, was to honor our police officers,” Patriot Mobile said in the release.

Later the same day, the police department expressed its gratitude in a separate social media post.

“Sincere thanks to our friends at Patriot Mobile,” GPD wrote. “We are blessed to have their support and encouragement. Today they presented us with a certificate to host a pizza party for our staff. We are grateful for the opportunity to have a fun and relaxing meal together as a team.”

Epoch Times Photo
Epoch Times Photo A photo of the Grapevine Police Department’s Twitter post taken on Jan. 17, 2023, where they thank Patriot Mobile for a $1,500 pizza party donation. (The Epoch Times)

“The unexpected and very nice thanks was a welcome surprise,” Patriot Mobile Chief Communications Officer Leigh Wambsganns told The Epoch Times in an interview.

But shortly after the social media post, the police department began receiving backlash for accepting a gift from the cellphone service provider, which describes itself as a Christian conservative company.

GPD Reconsiders Gift

In an about-face, the GPD deleted its original Facebook post thanking Patriot Mobile and took to social media again. The department’s original Twitter post was still active at the time of this publication.

This time, in a lengthy post, the GPD rescinded its acceptance of the gift.

“One of the aspects we value most from our Community is their willingness to speak up and voice their concerns, even when doing so might be difficult. Our Community deserves to be heard, and we want you to know we are listening,” GPD wrote on Saturday.

“This week, we accepted a food donation from a local business, as we often do, and posted a thank you on social media. This is not uncommon, as our Community is very giving and we want to recognize them and thank them. In this case, however, the donation rough out deep emotion,” the post said.

“One of our values, Dignity, ensures that we recognize the inherent worth of all persons and compels us to act toward them within a manner that conveys our understanding of that truth. It is being respectful to ALL. The Relationships we have, and desire, with our Community Members are foundational to growing trust and legitimacy.”

GPD said it did not intend to create “distrust” with the community when first accepted the gift from Patriot Mobile.

“Please know that our actions were not intended to create distrust, and we vow to do better moving forward. We are going to re-evaluate how we receive donations in the future, and will remain open, and transparent in how we do so,” the post continued.

“As for the donation and in the spirit of sharing what we have for others, we are opting to donate the food to a true need. We want something positive to come from the experience and that means giving to a worthy cause.”

The post ended with a thank you to those who spoke out about the donation, adding that the department is working on changing how it operates.

“We thank everyone who took the time to voice their thoughts, and we also thank you for allowing us a day to reflect on the situation. We are not merely giving you words today — we are working to make a lasting change in how we operate so we can move forward together. We recognize that we are one member of a great community.

“We will always strive to protect everyone in our community and remain committed to providing the highest quality police service,” the post read.

Outcry; Not Unexpected

The company said the outcry against them by some in the community and others across the country was not unexpected.

“The response from the far left is not surprising to us, nor is it anything new. We are humbled to serve as a Christian conservative company. Our mission is to defend our God-given Constitutional rights,” Patriot Mobile CEO Glenn Story said in a release.

“We have been called Christian Nationalists by those who want to silence us, to break us, to make us stop, but we embrace the term Christian Nationalist. We love our country and we love the Lord and we strive to be the light in the darkness.”

Patriot Mobile said it was disappointed with the announcement that the police department had made a decision to reject the donation.

“The irony in their [GPD] follow-up statement is that it was overtly political,” Wambsganns said. “I don’t know who wrote the statement, but I know it does not represent the views of all police officers in that department. Nor does it represent all citizens of Grapevine.”

Wambsganns said the company would continue to show its appreciation for all first responder heroes.

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