Angry Orchard is apologizing after a black man and woman were repeatedly accused of shoplifting by employees at its Upstate New York farm — while he tried to pop the question to her.
“We’re extremely embarrassed this happened,” the company said in a statement posted on Facebook. “We reached out and spoke directly with the guest involved to express our sincerest apology and offered to make it right…. We badly mishandled the situation and our team overreacted.”
The statement continued: “We’re extremely embarrassed this happened and have taken the immediate steps to remove the manager who was on-duty from her role and replace members of the security team.”
The company also promised more training in security and racial bias for the rest of their team.
The apology comes after Cathy-Marie Hamlet wrote about her recent unfortunate trip to the Angry Orchard farm in Walden, New York.
She explained in a post that has since gone viral on Facebook that she and a group of eight people had traveled from Manhattan to visit the farm last weekend to celebrate her boyfriend’s 40th birthday.
“My boyfriend walked me out to an empty table on the lawn, and before we could sit down, a young lady from security approached us and said to him, ‘I’m sorry sir, but I have to check you back pocket. I was told that you stole a T-shirt from the gift store,’” the post read.
He complied, but employees approached their group several times additionally to check their bags and continued to accuse them of having shoplifted a T-shirt, Hamlet said.
The most insensitive time, Hamlet recalled, was halfway through her boyfriend’s proposal.
“Shortly after, my boyfriend pops the question! I say yes, of course. People started cheering. And then the other 6 [of] our friends walked over to us to hug and congratulate us,” she wrote. “Then surprise, surprise ... the same young lady from security walks over to the group of us.”
Hamlet said the security team photographed them without their permission and took down their license plate as the group was kicked out. The security team also refused to watch the security tapes that would absolve them, she said.
“Not to sound pretentious, but as a doctor, I have no reason to steal a $28 T-shirt when I could afford to buy ALL of the T-shirts in their gift shop,” she concluded.
The post has since gone viral, with nearly 10,000 users reacting and more than 6,000 users sharing it since it was posted Monday.
“This is just sickening,” one woman wrote.
Another user said, “They will never receive another dollar of my money.”
Angry Orchard has not responded to InsideEdition.com’s request for further comment.