Denied Service: A Lesson In Jumping To Conclusions

An upsetting story erupted on Facebook recently (because Facebook is used solely as a tool to be upset by) about Caitlin Boucha, a service member, being denied service at a gas station because her uniform offended some of the cab drivers nearby. Social media was alerted by Dave Boucha, the father of Caitlin, with the following post.


This post was shared, shared and then shared again. There were protests at the gas station in question, calls to SuperAmerica demanding justice and even vague threats made to the people who work there. Agitators made posts of righteous indignation about how wrong this was and how we shouldn’t stand for this. And they’re right; we shouldn’t stand for this… if it had actually happened.

When I first got wind of this story, I was shocked at the racist tone of comments and also very cautious. Claims of service members being denied service is something that has looked into and has declared false except in one case, where the guilty party was promptly fired and the owner apologized to the service member in question. Something wasn’t adding up here, but instead of people questioning the validity of the story they immediately flew into a rage, demanding a boycott of SuperAmerica and how Muslims are taking over the country. Apparently, it’s only a matter of time until the call to pray will be mandatory and even outside of Uptown Minneapolis, hummus will become a food staple.

I contacted Caitlin Boucha and she seemed willing to speak to me. That, along with the below post by SuperAmerica on their Facebook page, caused me to begin believing that this could happen. If SuperAmerica had responded to this and the victim was willing to talk, how could this not be true? I should have stayed cautious.

SA Post

Boucha never got back to me, but you know who did? Gary Hanson, a media rep for SuperAmerica. Hanson called me back after I left a message on his phone and explained to me that SuperAmerica was taking this very seriously and that there were some inconsistencies in the story according to an investigation with the Airport Police Department and the military.

How did the police get involved? Well, that’s because some idiots decided to protest at the gas station where this supposedly happened. They blocked gas pumps and were a general nuisance. They also refused to leave. So the police showed up, because freedom of speech does not protect you from acting like an asshole and being called out on it. In case you’re thinking that SuperAmerica is a corporate behemoth that wants to crush the little guy, the very next day after the first protests, they allowed protestors on their property and didn’t ask them to leave because they weren’t blocking gas pumps.

When the police found out about what was going on and why, they decided to look into it, because believe it or not, denying service to someone in the military because they are in the military is illegal as shit. What followed would be funny if humor relied solely on blatant lies and the death of common sense.

After the incident, Caitlin made a complaint to the USAF Office of Special Investigation (OSI) which I’ll paraphrase from the police report:

Caitlin claimed a “skinny” Somalian or Muslim male denied her service by saying, “We don’t serve you here” when she tried to pre-pay for gas. At which point she returned to her vehicle and used her credit card at the pump.

Problems soon popped up. In order to verify that she had been at the gas station, the investigating police officer asked Caitlin for her card number to which Caitlin replied that it had been stolen. Although, luckily for the truth, SuperAmerica is able to search credit card transactions by name. Going back to April there were no transactions by Caitlin Boucha at the SuperAmerica in question.

Security footage was also scoured to try to verify if Boucha had even been there at any time during the day in question. No one matching her description was found on the footage.

Boucha had originally been opposed to speaking with the police but did eventually relent and came in to speak. The officer was able to deduce that only two black males were working on the day in question. Boucha was not able to pick them out of a lineup.

When the officer decided he had concluded his investigation, he told Boucha that he was not a member of the military and did not know what the military would do. He explained a prior case that was similar to this where the military did not let the person who made false accusations go to basic training.

When the officer stepped outside to speak with Teresa Boucha, Caitlin’s mother, Teresa showed the officer a text message from Caitlin saying that the officer said her military career is over. Once the officer brought Mother Boucha into the room, he stated he didn’t say that and Caitlin admitted he did not. Verbatim from the police report, “Teresa Boucha pleaded with Caitlin Boucha that the information she provides has to be factual.”

I’ll paraphrase the officer’s conclusions below:

  • Security video shows that Caitlin Boucha was not at Super America located at 5201 Post Road
  • Super America Credit Card Transaction History shows she did not use her credit cards at 5201 Post Road
  • Caitlin Boucha’s story is not consistent with her credit card/debit card statements
  • Caitlin Boucha picked #4 in the photo lineup with 75% certainty who is 5’9″, not 6’1″ to 6’3″ as described
  • Overall, security video shows that Caitlin Boucha was not present at Super America and her credit/debit cards statements are consistent with the video results

The Boucha family said they would post a clarifying Facebook post to clear this up which is below:


Even with that, the officer was told by activist Patricia Boyd Pearson that protests would still be planned at the SuperAmerica, which brings me to the main problem.

It’s bad enough that people jump to conclusions and post all over social media without looking into it; but when confronted with the truth, people refuse to believe it. Let me be clear. This did not happen. It is a fabricated story. It. Is. A. Lie. If you choose to still be offended at something that is so pants-shittingly false, then maybe you’re more concerned with being angry then you are with the welfare of service members.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Mark Wasson

Mark spent 7 years in the Minnesota National Guard as a combat medic. When's he's not busy losing friends, he's drinking with his dog. Befriend him on Facebook or follow him on a Twitter that he doesn't use.
Mark Wasson

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