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Controversial hats get women thrown out of King of Prussia Mall

May 22, 2013 3:01:11 PM PDT
A hat with a strategically placed ribbon says exactly how several North Philadelphia women are feeling about cancer.

For four years, their mother, 51-year-old Jackie Underwood, battled breast cancer until the disease took her life last Tuesday.

"The logo, the saying, is the only expression that I feel is strong enough to defeat the word, defeat the disease," Zakia Clark told Action News.

On Sunday Zakia and her sisters wore the hats at the King of Prussia Mall while they were shopping for funeral dresses.

Security approached and asked them to take the hats off or leave.

"I said, 'I'm not leaving. I spend money here and I'm not going to leave,'" said Zakia.

"He said, 'You know what? Shut your mouth. That was your cue to stop shopping.' So I removed my hat," she said.

The back and forth, caught on camera, still got the women kicked out.

Management told us, "The mall is first and foremost a family destination. Certain words and images, whether obvious or suggested, spoken or written on clothing, are considered profane and can offend many people."

The sisters pointed out stores in the mall like Urban Outfitters have certain controversial shirts on display. One we saw plainly reads, "*expletive* you."

"To say they don't want that in their mall, but they sell it... it just wasn't right," said Makia Underwood. "It wasn't right to kick us out, and you sell things with curse words on them."

The mall reached out to the sisters and apologized, offering to donate to a cancer charity of their choice.

Even with that gesture, they say with their mother's funeral set for Wednesday, this incident just added another bad memory to this difficult week.

COMPLETE STATEMENT FROM KING OF PRUSSIA MALL

"King of Prussia Mall would first like to express its condolences to the young women regarding the loss of their mother. King of Prussia Mall is a proud supporter of breast cancer awareness and other important causes however, the mall is first and foremost a family destination. Certain words and images, whether obvious or suggested, spoken or written on clothing, are considered profane and can offend many people. In keeping with the mall's Code of Conduct, security approached the women who were first asked respectfully to remove their caps and when they refused, were asked to leave. King of Prussia Mall is dedicated to providing a family-friendly atmosphere for all our shoppers and such profanity is not tolerated."
-Robert Hart, Mall Manager


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