By Will Maule
FaithWire. A former North Carolina police officer is taking his employer to court after being fired over his refusal to engage in one-on-one training with a female rookie cop.
Manuel Torres, 51, claims that he should have been granted “religious accommodation” after choosing to observe the “Billy Graham Rule.” The rule, coined by the late evangelist Billy Graham, prohibits married men from spending time alone with a woman other than their wife in a bid to protect them from the risk of infidelity.
The training Torres was instructed to carry out required that he “spend significant periods of time alone in his patrol car with the female officer trainee.”
As a result, Torres refused, citing personal religious reasons.
According to the lawsuit, the former police officer “holds the strong and sincere religious belief that the Holy Bible prohibits him, a married man, from being alone for extended periods of time with a female who is not his wife.”
The lawsuit claims that the Lee County Sheriff’s Office went back and forth between granting the exception and refusing it, before ultimately firing Torres “without explanation.”