Raw Video: Marine Kicked Out of Mall For Wearing a Bandana

GRANDVILLE, Mich. (April 4, 2014) — Christopher Leach said that he and his friend stopped at Rivertown Crossings Mall on Thursday to do some quick shopping. Leach said that he was wearing his bandana, and that’s why he was approached by security officers.

“You’re going to kick a veteran out of the mall for wearing a bandana?” Leach’s friend can be heard saying on cellphone video.

Leach’s friend recorded the confrontation on Thursday night.

Screen Shot 2014-04-04 at 6.58.43 PM

Picture of Christopher Leach during his confrontation Thursday night with a Rivertown Crossings security guard in Grandville, Mich.

The Marine said that he wears his bandana everywhere. He even wears it in his Michigan state ID photo.

“I always wear a bandana. It’s mainly functionality not for a fashion statement. It’s to keep the hair out of my eyes and I put it back on, went into a store, and shortly after he was waiting there to ask me to take it off again,” said Leach.

“I’ve never been asked to take it off before at the mall. I’ve been there multiple times and this is the first time, and I just felt like because of the way that myself and my friend look when we walked in the mall, we were discriminated against,” said Leach.

Rivertown Crossings tells FOX 17 that bandanas are in fact allowed to be worn at the mall, and released this statement:

“Rivertown Crossings regrets that this incident occurred. We were made aware of the incident last evening and our security vendor (Universal Protection Services) is investigating the details now. Universal Protection Services will be taking any action it believes is necessary to ensure it doesn’t happen again.”

Universal Protection Services released this statement on the issue:

“We regret this unfortunate incident occurred and we apologize to those who were impacted. Our priority is and will remain helping to creating a safe and pleasant environment at the center. We will continue to investigate this matter, and will implement the necessary matters to prevent this occurring from happening in the future.”

Leach said that he thinks he and his friend were discriminated against by the security officers because of the way the two were dressed.

“The way that we look, we shouldn’t have to change and I’ve been going to that mall since it was built. I’m a local, you know what I mean. I’ve been here since before it was built,” said Leach.

 

24 comments

  • tracyd112

    And then they wonder why stuff is started? If this security guy as I will never call any of the rentables COPS! I fhe was doing the security he was put there for then he would not be hasseling anyone about a bandanna .It was not the bandanna it was the way they looked as they did not look like they had money so this guy felt they did not belong. This security should have been watching for purse theifs or other criminal activity. Several times while being at the mall I have seen groups of younger kids and security not saying anything to them as they were grabbing each other in unapproiate ways and talking or I should say swearing or throwing gang sigbs but no these security people will not say anything to them.A veteran should be able to wear anything he wants he fought fore this country he has more right then 90 percent of us that did not defend our country for whatever reason.

  • Guest

    The supervisor in charge should be fired, not the employee. The employees call dispatch and the supervisor decides if they should follow with the problem. Chas should be fired.

  • Matt

    I've NEVER been told to take off my bandana, I used to ALWAYS wear my bandana when I had long hair, even at that mall and Woodland.

  • Private

    There are malls that prohibit certain kinds of clothing such as Hoodies-But there are signs posted regarding their rules -With that said, Regardless of whether he is a marine or not, If there are clothing rules/dress code (what is allowed or not) Those rules should be stipulated on signs clearly at all entrances/exits-
    Adding that no one is exempt!
    If there are no signs clearly posted, Then that insecurity guard had no reason to harass that individual, Unless he was being unruly or breaking the law, If the latter then he should have called in real law enforcement-Does not matter who it is!

  • Tina

    I have been asked to leave woodland mall for wearing a bandanna as well. I am 40+ yrs old have never went back. I have worn a bandanna sense i was a teen.

  • A. Vet

    I could care less if someone wants to wear a bandana! However, as a former marine I do object to this person making such a point of being a veteran, as though that automatically qualifies him as a "hero". There may be some, but I have never met a former marine that would act like that. Check out his service record!

  • Gringo Con maquina

    Here's a thought, why not get the guards side of the story. Also if this guy was truely an ex marine why would he look like a homeless person. Every marine I have ever met enlisted or retired at least take a bath.

  • wolvie

    nothing like a piece of cloth tied around your head to prove thug life. talk about profiling, as this takes the prize. and if a doo-rag is the definitive gang member proof, then it should be easy for the "real" cops to go on a round-up and get real members off the street…….

  • Veteran

    This is frustrating on multiple accounts. First Fox 17 is drawing in viewers with their focus on the mistreating of a local veteran and second they are not allowing us to hear both sides. First impressions are lasting impressions and no matter the outcome the community will not forget the emotions they felt when immediately hearing the story.

    Him being a service member has nothing to do with the true premise of the story. I don’t doubt that he is a service member either. After watching the clip, it does not appear that the gentleman in question states that he is a Marine. His friend recording the video says that he is. From my experience, the wannabes are the first to state that they are a Veteran. He didn’t even mention it when interviewed at the end.

    The clip seems to begin only after it all starts and is very short, not showing the ending either. I fully agree, we need to see the situation from the security guard’s side. Maybe their actions are what made the guard react the way he did and the individuals claiming mistreatment do not realize their wrongdoing. Better training for the security company, maybe.

    Even funnier are the commentators claiming that because he is a Marine, he should be looking a certain way. Obviously your experience with service members is very short sighted. As a Marine myself, I take great offense to these comments. You have no clue what he is going through; for those who do not understand, the transitioning phase is one of the hardest. We have to redefine ourselves within a new environment again. Sounds crazy, I know, but that is because you do not understand or care to. Civilian friends will never equate to military family. Civilian relationships will never be as strong as military bonds.. And maybe this is who he defines himself as. Accept him back without placing any expectations on him and see what he is capable of. You will probably not be let down.

  • tackleberry

    I think they need to fire Randy Zimmerman the mall general manger who throws everyone under the bus. Also they need to get rid of Lisa the supervisor of the whole mall. the mall was running fine when chas was there.

  • Scott

    Rules are rules, being a marine has no effect on what happened here the guy was told not to wear a bandana. Take off the bandana and move on with your day…

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