Hilo man banned from mall for a year after complaining about Pac - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

UPDATE: Hilo man's mall ban lifted after complaining about PacSun's music

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UPDATE: 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 4 

A Hilo man's mall ban has been lifted, according to Kimberly Shimabuku, the General Manager of Prince Kuhio Plaza. 

According to Shimabuku, mall management has never received a complaint about the noise level coming from PacSun.  Shimabuku says there are no formal complaints on file from either customer or tenants, and she only learned about the alleged volume concerns after Saturday night's incident.  

Shimabuku says she spoke with the manager of the Regal Prince Kuhio 9 Theater this morning and was informed movie patrons have made complaints to theater supervisors in the past, but Shimabuku says those complaints were never forwarded along to mall management.  

According to Shimabuku, she also spoke with a manager from PacSun's regional office who was "very apologetic and very accommodating" and expressed willingness to turn down the store's music level, despite national company policy. 

In the meantime, Shimabuku says she spoke with Tjaye Forsythe today and has lifted his one-year ban.  She says it was a misunderstanding that promoted mall security to serve him with the ban paperwork, based on their belief he was arrested.  

According to Forsythe, he confirmed today that he has not been charged and was not arrested, but clarified he was read his rights and gave a statement to police at the scene.

ORIGINAL STORY: 

A heated exchange between a Hilo man and the manager of a clothing store escalates to the point police are called.  Tjaye Forsythe says he's been banned from the only local Hilo mall for the next year, because he complained that music coming from PacSun next to the theater was too loud.

38-year-old Forsythe says he was just hoping for a nice Saturday night out at the movies with his wife and two nephews.  But instead of being able to enjoy the new release "After Earth", he says he and more than 150 other moviegoers were barely able to hear the film because the music coming from PacSun was blaring through the theater wall.

Forsythe says he didn't complain initially.

"But the sound just kept getting louder and louder to the point we couldn't – we could hardly understand what was coming through the speakers of the movie theater," explained Forsythe.

When he and his wife finally did complain to a supervisor, Forsythe says a manager told him the Regal Theaters has filed countless complaints with Prince Kuhio Plaza management about PacSun's music from unsatisfied customers, but nothing has been done.

"It's irritating because you know 12 dollars a ticket – between the four of us, we spent 60 bucks.  So, you pay for quality big screen and quality sound, and it was just interrupted from all of the music that was coming through the wall," described Forsythe.  "It was so loud that you could actually sing the song that was being played."

Forsythe says after both the theater manager and his wife called PacSun to ask for the music to be turned down, he left the theater and went to the store to speak with a supervisor himself.

"She told me that it was the company policy to make sure to keep the music at a certain level and that there's nothing she can do about it, and I said, ‘But you know what? You have 160 patrons that are at the movie, and that's just at our theater, it was sold out.  And all of us can hear this music clearly coming through the wall – can't you guys just reconsider and turn it down just a little?' And she says, ‘No, it's company policy to play the music at a certain level," explained Forsythe.

Forsythe says the situation quickly escalated with both he and the PacSun manager raising their voices.  He admits he was wrong to use profanity, but couldn't believe the supervisor refused to turn the music down.  Forsythe says the police were called and he was read his rights. According to the incident report, the 25-year-old PacSun employee says Forsythe entered the store "yelling loudly and acting aggressively".  She reportedly told police, she thought he would cause her harm".  Forsythe says he wasn't taken to the station or booked, but mall security did inform him he was banned from the entire Prince Kuhio Plaza complex for a year.

"If I step foot on that property they can have me arrested and charged for criminal trespass," explained Forsythe.

Adding to Forsythe's frustrations is a video that was posted on social media site Vine.  Forsythe says it was taken after he complained to the PacSun manager.  He says it features two other employees who were also working in the store Saturday night.  In it, they're dancing inside the store, singing along to the song "I love it (I don't care)".  The video has since been taken down, but Forsythe saved a copy.

Forsythe is getting a lot of virtual support on Facebook.  His post about the incident Saturday night has been liked by more than 540 people and shared nearly 500 times.  Many of the comments come from folks who say they've had similar experiences.  Others are calling for a boycott of the clothing store.

In a statement from PacSun, the company's senior vice president Paula Lentini wrote: "We worked very hard the past 24 hours to gather all the facts related to a Facebook post regarding a PacSun store manager in Hilo, Hawaii and the alleged arrest of a local Hilo resident.  We have determined that neither party was accurate in how they handled the situation. The store manager was following the music level guidelines provided to her by her offsite supervisor and did not have the authority to make changes to the level. Moving forward, PacSun will be working with mall management and the local theater to ensure the PacSun music is not a disturbance to theater guests.  Also, with regard to the involvement of local law enforcement, due to the verbal incident, it was at the recommendation of mall security to have the manager call the authorities. PacSun has been in Hilo for more than 13 years and values our customers who frequent our store each and every day.  This is an unfortunate circumstance and we will work hard to rectify the situation with our customers as well as neighboring mall tenants."

Forsythe says it's time for mall management to take charge of the situation.

"Being that there is consistent daily, weekly complaints of noise coming through the wall from PacSun –they should address that problem and settle it, but it hasn't been," said Forsythe.

Calls to the General Manager for Prince Kuhio Plaza, which is managed by General Growth Properties, were not returned Monday. 

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