Family says children saw sexual images on television inside Burger King in Southgate

Father says sexual scene played on television

By Priya Mann - Reporter, Derick Hutchinson

SOUTHGATE, Mich. - A Downriver family said a Sunday afternoon trip to the Burger King restaurant in Southgate was anything but typical. They said an explicit R-rated sex scene was playing on the television.

When the family complained to employees, they said nothing was done to prevent children from seeing the graphic images.

A father and his two young stepsons -- ages 7 and 8 -- went to the Burger King for the standard fare, burgers and chicken nuggets. But when they walked in, they got more than they bargained for.

"It almost seemed like a scripted pornographic film," Richard Avery said.

Avery said the volume was turned off and he didn't realize what was playing until his stepson said something.

"My oldest son said to my youngest son, 'Don't look up at the TV,'" Avery said. "I look up at the TV and this guy was fondling this woman's breast. The man was thrusting on a woman. That's definitely not something you see at a Burger King any day."

Avery said workers ignored his request to change the channel or turn off the television.

"I didn't even get a direct response," Avery said. "They were trying to figure out orders still. I couldn't believe it."

Avery said he turned the television off. He said he was more concerned with protecting his children than recording the movie.

"He was kind of embarrassed he'd seen it," Avery said. "I told him it was OK, not your fault, don't think about it."

The television was still off Sunday evening when Local 4 stopped by the Burger King. When we called, an employee admitted sexual images were played on the television before hanging up the phone.

"I feel like this will torment my eldest son," Avery said. "Someone has to pay."

His son has ADHD combined with a photographic memory, Avery said. He's worried the graphic images will manifest into behavioral issues.

"When they see a man or a woman, they see them with a shirt on," Avery said. "Now they know what's underneath that shirt. It's not up to Burger King when we have a sex talk with our kids."

Burger King media relations released the following statement:

"This behavior does not reflect our brand values or the values of the franchisee who independently owns and operates this restaurant. The franchisee is investigating this incident thoroughly."

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