An Illinois Dairy Queen was closed after the franchise owner allegedly used racial slurs directed toward a customer and her children.
Deia Ford, 21, went to a Zion, Illinois, Dairy Queen drive-thru with her two children to get food on Jan 4, WLS reports. When she didn’t receive her full order, she asked for a refund. She was shocked by what happened when the franchise owner, Jim Crichton, approached her and her children.
“It was really just upsetting especially with having my children in the car,” Ford said. “I mean, no one deserves to be treated like that.”
The mother says Crichton used racial slurs toward her in front of her children. She was so upset by the situation that she called the police.
“I was kind of taken back, and my daughter in the back seat repeated what he said, asked me what that means,” Ford said.
A police report says Crichton proudly admitted to using the sluts when he spoke to police. The report says that he said “he would be happy to go back to jail over the issue and proudly admitted calling Ford a (n-word) – and that he is ‘fed up with black people.'”
Crichton later issued an apology for the incident.
“What I said was not appropriate and is something I cannot take back,” Crichton said in his apology. “I have no excuse. I can only ask for forgiveness and try to make it up to all involved. As a start, I, along with my employees, will undergo sensitivity training.”
Dairy Queen’s corporate headquarters issued a statement regarding the incident.
“The recent actions of this franchisee are inexcusable, reprehensible, unacceptable and do not represent the values of the Dairy Queen family, our employees, fans and other independent franchisees around the world,” the company’s statement reads. “We expect our franchisees and their employees to treat every single person who walks through their doors with the utmost dignity and respect. Nothing less is acceptable.”
The company announced on Jan. 7 that the Zion location will be closed until further noticed, WTAE reports. Dairy Queen added that it is in the process of terminating the franchise owner’s rights.