On August 9, 2010 around 8:15 p.m., my daughters and I walked into the Mattress Firm in Douglasville, GA to apply for credit for her own mattress set; a rite of passage to her to obtain her first bill. The sales clerk looked at my daughter very strangely. Once we were completed, I gave the form to the sales clerk. He stated that her credit app was denied. I asked ‘why she was denied because the mattress set was inexpensive and she has her own income; why would it be denied?’ He said ‘you will receive a letter from Wells Fargo.’ Just as conversation, ‘how would my daughter obtain credit?’ He sarcastically stated, ‘I’m not a credit counselor and ask someone else. I’m not here to advise on credit issues.’ He smirked and walked back to his desk. I said ‘since we walked in the store, u r rude and not accommodating to us.’ He shouted, ‘well, if you don’t like it, guess what...you can leave!’ I said ‘I’m a paying customer and hadn’t done anything.’ I asked his name and his card to report him to his DM. He grabbed a card and threw it near my r-eye and blared off ‘u brought ur DS child to obtain credit bcuz u can’t afford to purchase one!’ Also, ‘u need to get outta of the store along with ur Down syndrome daughter and ill mannered children!’
I called the police to make an incident report. As he talked with his DM; I overheard him stating, ‘she’s Black with a Down syndrome daughter and ill mannered kids. I told her to leave, but she’s not leaving. She said she called the police, but I don’t care.’ I’ve purchased two mattress sets from the Buckhead location with no problem; one 90 day or less and the other cash. I told my daughters that I’m going to bring it to someone’s attention, and that’s what I’m doing. He has no right to treat myself or my daughters in this way and I want at the very least this incident to be documented.
2 Answers from Attorneys
Nothing in your post presents a legal issue.
Obviously you will want to not shop there again. You might want to call the corporate office to complain, but that doesn't change anything other than to let them know. They may or may not want to fire their employee for such conduct.
Regardless, you will want to shop elsewhere.
While the clerk may have acted rudely and in an insulting manner (according to your story), contrary to the tone of your post, you had no right to stay in the store, paying customer (which apparently you were not), or otherwise. Had the incident escalated, you could have been charged with trespass or disorderly conduct. Once told to leave, you should have left, and called a manager later to complain. By staying to keep the incident going after asked to leave, you could have set yourself up for arrest.