San Ysidro, CA – A San Ysidro Shell gas station has been shutting off their pumps when officers stop to fuel up, according to Customs & Border Protection (CBP).
On Saturday, five CBP officers stopped at about 1 p.m. to fill up a tactical truck at the Shell gas station located at 108 W. San Ysidro Boulevard.
The CBP officers were doing a temporary assignment working with the Anti-Terrorism Contraband Enforcement Team on Jan. 6, and needed to get gas during an operation.
“I’m driving a big what we call tool truck – a big commercial truck. It’s huge. So I drive it in and start filling up, no problem,” said the officer who reported the incident to Blue Lives Matter.
“There were four officers with us. They went inside to go grab some snacks while I pumped,” the officer said.
He said the officers who went into the store were greeted by what they described as a surprised cashier.
“She told the officers ‘we don’t usually serve CBP here,’” the officer reported.
He said that about the same time the officers were walking out of the store in response to that comment, the gas pump suddenly shut off.
“I thought it was weird because it’s a big tank. I checked and I only had a half tank in there. It just stopped abruptly like I was done,” he said. He said it wouldn't turn back on to continue fueling.
The officer said he and the other officers discussed what had happened, and agreed they had enough gas to get where they were going, and no time to fool around.
“We were in the middle of an operation,” the officer explained.
Later on, when they were back at their offices, the officers mentioned the incident to their supervisors.
“That’s when our supervisors informed us that it wasn’t the first time that had happened. They recently turned off the gas on one of our chase cars that was filling up,” the officer said. “That Shell station has literally cancelled the gas every time we tried to fill up.”
The CBP officer said he was really disappointed that a business would behave in such a way towards law enforcement.
“I feel like that gas station is getting political and they don’t like CBP,” he said.
Blue Lives Matter hasn’t been able to reach anyone at the gas station for comment. Their listed phone number has been busy for two days.
But Shell’s corporate office said they are investigating what happened with the CBP officers at the San Ysidro station.
“Shell Oil Products US takes these allegations seriously, and our Retail Territory Manager is currently investigating this issue,” Natalie Gunnell, a Shell spokesperson, wrote in an email.
“Shell does not condone the type of behavior alleged to have occurred, and we expect that third parties selling Shell-branded motor fuels treat every customer in a fair and inclusive manner,” Gunnell wrote. “We respect and support law enforcement personnel and first responders across the country and are proud to have them choose Shell.”
She said that while the name on sign at the gas station reflects the brand of motor fuel being sold on the premises, the convenience store and the day-to-day site operations are the legal responsibility of the wholesaler, site owner and/or operator.
Blue Lives Matter left messages for a representative of the station referred by Shell’s corporate offices, but had not received a reply at the time of publication.
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