Earlier this month, the family of a 3-year-old victim of a vicious dog attack had posted on a Facebook page set up to track her recovery about the youngster being treated rudely at a KFC in Jackson, MS, saying the girl and her grandmother were “asked to leave because her face scared the other diners.”
This resulted in a huge outpouring of anger toward the restaurant chain and support from the public. KFC ultimately pledged to donate $30,000 toward the girl’s medical bills while more than $100,000 in donations and gifts were reportedly given by others.
However, KFC continued to investigate the family’s claim. The first crack came when the family changed the location that had originally been mentioned in their online complaint. A Facebook post chalked that error up to a simple slip of memory by the grandmother.
But then the Laurel, MS, Leader-Call spoke to several anonymous sources at KFCs in the area and found nothing but outright denials, with workers at the KFC in question saying they often get customers with visible medical issues because of the store’s proximity to a hospital. Additionally, some of the sources said that there was no evidence that the girl and her grandmother had even come into that KFC during the time period mentioned in their accusation.
Then last night, KFC franchisee Hannon Food Services told Jackon’s 16 WAPT News that it had reviewed security footage and spoken to all employees at the location of the alleged incident and found nothing to back up the family’s story.
“As of today, neither Hannon Food Services nor the outside firm involved in the consultation has found any evidence to verify that the incident took place at our restaurant on Woodrow Wilson Drive,” reads the statement. “Nevertheless, we’ll continue to exhaust every possible avenue until we’re absolutely sure we have all the facts.”
The franchisee wants to meet with the girl’s family “so they can provide us with any additional information they would like for us to be aware of.”
The family’s attorney continued to defend their story.
“It is unfortunate that Victoria and her family are being vilified on what appears to be the result of an inconclusive investigation conducted by KFC and/or its agents that implies Victoria’s story is a ‘hoax,’” he tells WAPT. “It is deeply disappointing that other parties have taken opportunity to attack Victoria through social and news media outlets. Victoria is an innocent child with very real physical and emotional scars. The focus of her family has always been, and will always be on Victoria and making her whole again.”
The Facebook page that the family had been using to respond to hoax allegations appears to have been removed from the social media site.