An Arizona man is considering legal action after he was accused of sneaking into a movie theater by a manager who later called the police.
Larry Shelton says he left a showing of Captain Marvel for a bathroom break and to get a refill of his soda. A manager approached him as he attempted to walk back to his seat.
“I’m walking back to my seat with my cup when a manager runs up and said I entered the building through an exit door,” Shelton told Yahoo Lifestyle. “He was very nasty with me and told me to leave.”
Shelton brushed him off and told the manager to check the security cameras if he wants proof. The 40-year-old made it back to his seat, but it wasn’t long before the manager approached him again with several police officers. Faced with a volatile situation, Shelton began to film the encounter.
“These guys said you didn’t have a ticket,” an officer told Shelton after they walked out of the auditorium.
“Sir, you walked in an exit door and my staff warned me they did not sell you a ticket…I am sure. Nobody scanned your ticket,” the manager stated.
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Shelton asked a police officer to hold his drink and pulled out a small ticket stub. The conflict didn’t end there.
“Oh yes, this is a ticket that does look like it was purchased…but you should have shown me the ticket…you walked in [from] the exit door,” the manager said.
Shelton told the manager he was embarrassed and asked for a refund, but the manager refused.
“You’re not getting a refund,” the manager said. “You violated our code of conduct by turning a flashlight on in the theater.”
Shelton says he didn’t show the stub because of how the manager approached him.
"AMC needs to train their people like they want to be treated," he told AZ Central. "If you treat people like you want to be treated, this would have never happened. Now I have the shame of people who were in the theater, if they see me out, I'm going to be that guy who police took out of the theater, who snuck in there in their minds because they don't know what really happened.”
Shelton posted the exchange on his Facebook page, which has been viewed more than 570,000 times.
The police left without conducting any arrests and determined there were no laws broken.
An AMC corporate spokesperson apologized in a statement.
“AMC deeply regrets that this avoidable situation occurred,” it read. “Based on our initial investigation, including interviews with the theatre staff and our outreach to the guest, this situation could have been handled differently to minimize frustration, and we’ve offered our sincere apologies to Mr. Shelton.”
Shelton said he was offered free movie tickets and snack vouchers, but it isn’t enough. He is looking to pursue legal action against the company.
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