REPORT Mauled 3-year-old girl thrown out by KFC story untrue

Pit bull mauling victim Victoria Wilcher allegedly thrown out of KFC for scaring customers

Last week the story of three-year-old pit bull mauling victim Victoria Wilcher being thrown out of a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Jackson, Mississippi went viral after her family posted the photo above on the Victoria’s Victories Facebook page and asked, “Does this face look scary to you?” They then added an explanation for the question. “Last week at KFC in Jackson MS this precious face was asked to leave because her face scared the other diners. I personally will never step foot in another KFC again and will be personally writing the CEO.”

The story exploded online and Kentucky Fried Chicken pledged to donate $30,000 to assist with Victoria’s medical bills as they launched an investigation into the incident.

Now The Laurel Leader-Call has anonymous sources with “deep knowledge of the investigation” that claim the evidence suggests the whole thing never happened.

First, it’s important that we establish exactly where the alleged incident took place. Teri Rials Bates, Victoria’s aunt, initially wrote on the Victoria’s Victories Facebook page, “Thank you for your support for Victoria. If you would like to file a complaint its the KFC on State Street in Jackson MS.” Bates later corrected herself by posting, “Im the Aunt, I run her page and Im the one that miss quoted that it was State street when it was actually Woodrow Wilson.”

According to Victoria’s grandmother Victoria Mullins, who was with the girl at the time of the alleged incident, little Victoria was asked to leave Kentucky Fried Chicken on May 15. The Laurel Leader-Call sources say investigators have looked at surveillance videos from the Woodrow Wilson location as well as the Meadowbrook location (the other KFC close to Batson Children’s Hospital where Victoria was visiting on May 15) and “at no time on the 15th were any children in the store who match the description of Victoria Wilcher or Mullins.”

Also, Mullins told WAPT: “I ordered a sweet tea and mashed potatoes and gravy. I sat down at the table and started feeding her and the lady came over and said that we would have to leave, because we were disturbing other customers, that Victoria’s face was disturbing other customers.” According to one of The Laurel Leader-Call’s sources, “no orders were recorded to include mashed potatoes and sweet tea on the same transaction, or even the two items as part of a larger order on May 15,” the site says.

Legal representatives for both sides have refused to comment officially until the results of the investigation are made public. The same cannot be said for “Dick West, who is the president of West Quality Food, one of the largest franchisees in the KFC chain and the owner of the local KFCs.” According to The Laurel Leader-Call, West posted a comment on a Facebook story about the incident from a Jackson television station: “When the allegation was first made, KFC pledged $30,000 to go to medical expenses and started an investigation to find the truth. They have pledged the money even if it is proven that the incident never happened. At this point their story is full of holes. Any thinking person who follows their timeline can see it. The event at KFC never happened.”

Meanwhile, the Victoria’s Victories Facebook page responded to the “hoax” story moments ago:

I promise its not a hoax, I never thought any of this would blow up the way it has. The article circling the web calling this a hoax is untrue. The article it self say the investigation is not complete. It is not over until KFC releases a statement. The media outlet running this story is not connected with KFC. The family has not asked for anything, a attorney is handling all the media publicity for the family pro bono. Please do not believe untrue media. I have personally watched this family go without to provide for Victoria. They have not and would not do anything to hurt Victoria in any way.

The posting has sparked quite the debate in the comments section over what the truth really is, how the media handled the story, and whether or not the ends justify the means because at least now it appears as though Victoria will be getting the surgeries that she needs. (It should be pointed out that the KFC employees at the two stores in question have received death threats, angry messages and items thrown at them by people in the drive through.)

It should also be noted that The Laurel Leader-Call article is the only source for all of the reports of this being a hoax, and at least one of their sources appears to be connected to Kentucky Fried Chicken. At least that appears to be the case judging by the use of the pronoun “we” in quotes like this:

“We have never ever ever run off anyone, and we have seen some really really sick people come to the restaurant from the hospital,” the source said. “We’ve had people come in who were shot in the face. We’ve had them with tubes and wire sticking out. We never have asked anyone to leave. “There is a physically challenged person working in the Woodrow Wilson location and one of the other (KFC) managers has a child with Tourette’s Syndrome,” the source said.

I’m guessing we will know more soon, when the results of the third-party investigation are released. But no matter what the investigation shows, there’s pretty much no way this isn’t a terrible story.

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