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.
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.