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Child left ‘traumatised’ after police are called by Cardiff LEGO Store


Police were called by the store manager after he claims ‘Under 14’s aren’t allowed in unsupervised’

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South Wales News Service | Part of the SMA Media Group

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28/11/2018  |  22:30 |  By: Shaun Ashford, SMA Media Group

With Christmas quickly approaching, millions of shoppers, of all ages, head to the high streets in the hope to find their loved ones that perfect gift to unwrap on Christmas Day. That was certainly the case for 9-year-old Oz who headed into Cardiff City Centre to visit the LEGO store on Sunday November 25, 2018.


9-year-old Oz told us that his brother is ‘LEGO mad’ so he wanted to visit the store to find the perfect Christmas gift. Oz continued to tell us that he ‘was able to buy what he wanted but was then detained by the store’.


“I saved my own money from doing jobs” explains Oz. “I only wanted to buy a present, I never thought that I would be discriminated against because of my age.”

LEGO is one of the world’s most well known toys (Image: LEGO Group)

Mother, Jennifer, said, “Oz is very mature for his age and has been taught all of the skills that he needed to know including what to do should he be approached by a PCSO or a police officer. He had saved his own money to buy gifts for the family this Christmas. He was very proud to be able to go shopping to purchase what he wanted to. At no time did I think that something like this would happen.”


“He disclosed to me later on that the PCSO that attended the store ‘forced’ him into the back room, they should never have done that, he didn’t commit a crime.”


Jennifer explained that Oz is home educated and was very interested in taking the injustice that he has suffered further. “When I spoke to the police officer who was with him, the officer told me that he had spoken to Oz and agreed that he did indeed have all the skills needed to be in town and do the things he wanted to. Oz had his mobile phone and knew to ring me if anything happened, but the police didn’t let him.”


Hitting out on social media, a friend of the family, Rebecca Hodson, told us, “He went to buy Lego for his siblings and was detained in the back room. They refused to allow him contact with his parents. When police arrived, he was marched through the store.”


She continued to tell us that, “The child is traumatised.”


Rebecca explained to us how the manager informed the family that they [LEGO store] do not allow unsupervised children under the age of 14 in the store and that they escort any would be shopper from the premises to the police.


‘All children have the right to fun, creative and engaging play experiences’ is what is claimed when you visit the lego.com website and yet according to the store manager, children aren’t allowed into the store unsupervised.


Speaking to Oz about how he feels following this shocking incident, he said, “I’m really scared of being independent now, about using other facilities in town like the library.”


The LEGO Group is a family-owned company based in Billund, Denmark with main offices in the USA, UK, China and Singapore. Founded in 1932, they are one of the world’s leading manufacturers of play materials.


We contacted the LEGO Group in relation to this incident but they did not respond. However, speaking to the store manager, Mark told us, “I’m aware that it’s on social media and I’m saying no comment to anything at the moment.”


We reached out to South Wales Police in relation to this incident who told us, “At around 1pm on Sunday, staff at a city centre shop raised concerns for a nine-year-old boy in the city centre on his own. Officers offered to take the boy home safely. However his mother was unhappy with this offer and confirmed over the telephone that he did not require any police assistance. A PCSO stayed with the boy until his mother arrived to collect him.”


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