A firestorm has been brewing down in Jacksonville, Florida over the last day or two.

At the center of the controversy is a power sports business that happens to cater to military veterans.

The store, Jaguar Power Sports, flies flags from each of the military branches, plus a pair of American flags and a Jacksonville Jaguars flag. According to city ordinances, the military flags were against code, which is what led city inspector Melinda Powers into their store on Monday.

From News 4 Jax:

Surveillance video captured city inspector Melinda Power getting in the face of the customer at Jaguar Power Sports on Blanding Boulevard.

Employees told News4Jax on Monday that she was so disruptive and disrespectful to the veteran, they asked her to leave.

About noon Monday, Power went into the store and issued a written warning citation because she said military flags flying on the roof were in violation of city code. The rooftop display includes two United States flags, a Jacksonville Jaguars flag and flags representing each branch of the military.

“We cater to our men and women, both retired and active military, so it was personal. We felt like it was a personal attack,” store manager Marcy Moyer said.

According to employees, the warning caused a customer to become upset. The customer seen in the video is a military veteran who thought it was wrong to force store managers to take down the military flags.

“The way she handled the situation was terrible,” Moyer said.

At one point, the video shows Power getting in the man’s face.

“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 and says, ‘You did nothing for this country,'” store employee Katie Klasse said.

Managers said despite the warning citation, the flags would not be going anywhere soon.

Here’s what the store owners had to say about what happened:

T shirt Benefit / Military Flags

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A SHIRT https://www.facebook.com/commerce/products/2112257178791058/?hc_ref=ARQrYrFcT9oHdZy0GtR0XmDfPN9G-fnn5vQJAhesw9IezgdcQHx3UHFZd22gm4Gdx1AThank you so much for all the support all around the country. The support has come near and far. The city of Jacksonville is working with our company to make sure things like this does not happen again. Thank you Mayor of Jacksonville for reaching out and helping us with this. Our voice was heard and thank you for everyone for helping .Over the last 24 hours many people have contacted us wanting to buy a T shirt - We are currently making a custom shirt as we speak but wanted to get the word out. The design will be finalized and a limited amount shirts will be printed so if you want one please order asap. All proceeds will be donated to 100% of all donations received helps Veterans in need, If you wish to support FLORIDA CHAPTER 20-2COMBAT VETERANS MOTORCYCLE ASSOCIATIONhttp://fl2.combatvet.org/Please allow 2-3 weeks for the shirt to arrive. We are making them and shipping them once we have a little time.Military Flags not allowed in Jacksonville , Melinda Power cites Jaguar Power Sports for flying military flags ... but wait it gets better —- what did she SAY ?? Watch

Posted by Jaguar Power Sports on Monday, April 16, 2018

Almost immediately outcry from the community was heard by the Mayor’s office, and the local Republican leadership swung into action.

Mayor Lenny Curry (R) was unequivocal in his statement upon hearing what Jaguar Power Sports had been through:

The mayor’s chief of staff, Brian Hughes, also released a statement to local media, expressing the mayor’s disgust with the situation.

“We are disturbed by some of the claims made about a City employee and are reviewing the facts. We are also reviewing the current ordinances regarding flags and signs to ensure accurate information was shared. The business was issued a warning, and was not fined. Warnings are issued to provide property owners information about a possible violation, and corrective action.

“I have contacted the dealership and provided the owner with the mayor’s contact information for them to discuss directly. Mayor Curry and his administration respect and appreciate those in uniform who have served and continue to serve our community, and our country.”

Soon after the mayor’s office learned of what happened, Jaguar Power Sports got the good news they were hoping for and their citation was rescinded.

Flags Can Stay !!!!!

****Update City of Jacksonville Flags Can Stay !!!!!WJXT4 The Local Station / News4JAX First Coast News Action News Jax

Posted by Jaguar Power Sports on Monday, April 16, 2018

For her part, city inspector Melinda Powers, said the entire situation was a catastrophic series of mistakes.

She says that the flags were against code, but that the conflict in the store was just a misunderstanding, and that she has the utmost respect for our nation’s veterans.

Here’s what she wrote in a Facebook post apologizing for the incident:

The folks at Jaguar Power Sports want to thank everyone for their support:

***Update 9pm Thank you !!!!🙏Mayor letter below !! Watch now Cross country support ! Duvall has support and the city of Jax did a amazing thing. Watch now 🛵🏍🛴🚲Www.jaguarpowersports.com

Posted by Jaguar Power Sports on Monday, April 16, 2018

Article posted with permission from Constitution.com

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