Walmart has issued an apology after a breast cancer survivor said she felt compelled to show her mastectomy scar to be able to return a $13 book.
The woman, who KCTV5 is not identifying, said she received the book as a Christmas gift for her son.
"We didn't have a receipt. It was a gift," she said.
The woman, who underwent chemotherapy, went to a Northland Walmart off Barry Road to exchange the item. But she never imagined the scrutiny she would face in trying to make a simple exchange.
She was asked to produce a photo identification, which she readily did so, saying she knows they have to keep records to prevent fraud. But several employees didn't believe it was her because her long, blonde hair is now short and brown. Her facial features are the same, but chemotherapy ravaged her hair.
"Instead of looking at facial features, she said, 'Oh, your hair is not blonde anymore.' I had on a hat. I said, 'I lost it. It's growing back,'" the woman recalled. "She kind of frowned at me. I said, 'Honestly, it's personal but I have cancer. That's why my hair looks different.' And she kind of rolled her eyes at me and kind of snapped her fingers for her manager to come over."
She said three employees, including a manager, scrutinized her identification for what felt like an uncomfortably long period of time.
She said she offered to show them her scars.
"They were rude to me. So I finally pulled down the top of my shirt and showed them I still have the scar," she recalled. "They were kind of shocked. I said, 'I have breast cancer. I'm not going to show you another scar.'"
Walmart officials said they have reached out to store management to discuss ways to handle such cases differently.
"We truly apologize to the customer for her experience," the company said in a statement.
The woman did receive a gift card for the returned book and she hopes others will be more compassionate.
"I don't go around telling everyone and frankly it wasn't any of their business," she said. "But I just wanted to get the situation over with."
Copyright2013 KCTV (MeredithCorp.) All rights reserved.
Friday, May 24 2013 12:29 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:29:51 GMT
Every week, CBS 5 News is sent a list of restaurants that have been recently inspected by Maricopa County's Environmental Services Department. CBS 5 News selects five restaurants with some of the highestMore >
Every week, CBS 5 News is sent a list of restaurants that have been recently inspected by Maricopa County's Environmental Services Department.More >
Friday, May 24 2013 2:31 AM EDT2013-05-24 06:31:07 GMT
Jodi Arias (Source: CBS 5 News)
It is now in the hands of the 12 jurors to decide if Jodi Arias will live her life behind bars or if she'll be executed. The defense and prosecution gave their closing statement Tuesday afternoon andMore >
The judge has declared a mistrial in the penalty phase of the Jodi Arias trial. The jury announced late Thursday afternoon that they could not reach a unanimous decision on life or death for Arias.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 12:39 PM EDT2013-05-23 16:39:28 GMT
Dan Marco's son was murdered in 2010. (Source: CBS 5 News)
Only people who have lost a close loved one can understand the pain of Travis Alexander's family"My heart goes out to them, because I understand," says Dan Marco, who's son Zachary was murdered in 2010.ZacharyMore >
Only people who have lost a close loved one can understand the pain of Travis Alexander's family.More >
Friday, May 24 2013 4:38 AM EDT2013-05-24 08:38:10 GMT
(RNN) - A bridge in Washington has collapsed and at least two cars are in the water, according to KING 5 TV out of Seattle. The bridge is part of Interstate 5. There is no word on injuries. Copyright 2013More >
A photo from the scene showed a man sitting on top of his car, which was partially submerged.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 8:00 AM EDT2013-05-23 12:00:17 GMT
A former flight instructor who taught foreign flight students at one of the Valley's pilot schools told CBS 5 Investigates the students often could barely speak English. "I'd say at least 50 percent ofMore >
A former flight instructor who taught foreign flight students at one of the Valley's pilot schools told CBS 5 Investigates the students often could barely speak English.More >
Friday, May 24 2013 6:21 AM EDT2013-05-24 10:21:37 GMT
A group supporting Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is asking a judge to let its lawsuit seeking to end a recall effort against the sheriff move forward in court.Citizens To Protect Fair Election ResultsMore >
A group supporting Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is asking a judge to let its lawsuit seeking to end a recall effort against the sheriff move forward in court.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 11:43 AM EDT2013-05-23 15:43:24 GMT
Fallen officer's daughter graduates from kindergarten
Hundreds of Phoenix police officers showed their support for a fallen colleague by attending his daughter's kindergarten graduation in Anthem on Wednesday. Officer Daryl Raetz was killed in the lineMore >
Tatum Raetz, 5, graduated from kindergarten in Anthem Wednesday and hundreds of uniformed Phoenix police officers were there to show their support for the family.More >