ATT Uverse — at&t employees take customer phone who was videotaping their service in an atlantic station retail store in atlanta
On Wednesday, February 1, 2017, my nephew entered an AT&T retail store at Atlantic Station in Atlanta about 7 minutes before closing to get internet service and a $40 refund on an item he had previously purchased. He was told he could not get an in-store refund and they would have to mail him a check. They also told him that it was too late to sell him internet service and since he was returning the item, they weren’t going to discuss it with him. He says that things escalated between him and the representative and he began recording the incident with his phone. An AT&T employee in the store took his phone out of his hand and told him he could not record their interaction. My nephew has never been historically hostile or belligerent so this is surprising to me that he would be considered threatening to anyone. He was then directed to leave the store, while they still had his phone. He asked for his phone and another employee put her hands on him to push him out of the store and another employee deleted the video from his phone.See the Top 10 Worst Complaints in Atlanta, GA He was trying to get his phone back to call the police but a security guard in the store said that the streets were closed and the police didn’t come on the street if it was closed. That is of course not true and he should have contacted the police anyway but he didn’t. He is contacting the police later today to make a formal complaint with the Atlanta Police Department.
Any reasonable person would find the alleged incident to be unacceptable and marginally illegal. I don’t have much faith that I will get an honest and accurate account from the AT&T personnel who witnessed this incident, including the manager who was in the store. I would think that AT&T has video footage of the incident and it can be reviewed by regional and corporate representatives to determine the veracity of our complaint.
This formal complaint is merely a first step in documenting the incident, I think it is important to highlight this kind of hyper-aggressive reaction that happens far too frequently to young African American men. The video should identify if the AT&T employees’ behavior was assault, criminal or illegal.
I know this is a case of their word against my nephew’s if we do not have video footage from the store or the video that was captured on his phone was intentionally deleted.
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