Paul Blart Mall Cop on Paid Leave for Turning Off Body Cam at Build-A-Bear
West Orange Pavilion Mall Security Officer Paul Blart has been placed on paid suspension following his actions at the outlet’s Build-A-Bear Workshop.
On Friday, September 30, 2022, Blart made his rounds near the Auntie Anne’s Pretzels for the fourth time when he noticed “suspicious characters” approaching the beloved stuffed animal retailer. As he slowly approached the pair on his segway, similar to an automated, diabetic cat about to pounce on a poor unsuspecting ball of yarn, he crouched and leaned too aggressively into his segway, “accidentally” pressing the button to deactivate his body cam.
The incident led to a full scale investigation into Paul Blart for willful destruction of evidence. The body cam footage would have added a level of clarity to the events of Blart’s pursuit of the aforementioned “suspicious characters” into Build-A-Bear Workshop.
In the security footage accessible from Build-A-Bear Workshop and the surrounding stores, Hot Topic and Big Bubba Billy Bob Bazingus’ Crematorium, Blart appears to lose control of his motorized vehicle in his pursuit of the suspects, crashing into the display of clothes that customers can buy to dress their new adorable furry friends (#NotSponsored). Eyewitness reports allege that during the rampant destruction, Blart was flung from his vehicle into the bucket of fluff used to penetrate the stuffed animals and pump them full of white stuff, symbolizing love (#StillNotSponsored #JustAFan #FurryFriends). While Blart remained stranded in the sea of fluff, his segway charged over the display, mindlessly mowing down customers of various ages and sizes. The segway developed a devastating body count before Blart fell out of the stuffing machine, obviously disturbed and perhaps questioning his sexuality as he attempted to regain control of this menacing motorized mobile device.
By this point, the segway had gone completely haywire, smacking repeatedly into unarmed patrons of one of, if not the very best, toy store in America (#LookingForSponsors).
Citizens of West Orange, New Jersey are now debating whether security personnel need such large, dangerous segways to properly protect the public. They suppose that segways are an overwhelming display of force for an officer of the mall and that the mall would be safer with no segways at all, especially given how easily accessible segways currently are to the public. Their argument continues to unfold by pointing out how quickly security personnel default to using their segways, rather than trying to resolve situations peacefully without them.
On the other hand, some segway enthusiasts with the NRA (National Ride-On-A-Segway Association) argue that citizens need to possess their own motorized segways to defend themselves and others from people who may seek to do harm with such dangerous weapons. The argument is often that a responsible segway owner can stop an irresponsible or dangerous segway owner before any harm can be done.
No matter which side of the debate you subscribe to, it is generally agreed that there needs to be extensive testing and review before people, including mall cops, are able to own, operate, and utilize segways in order to defend the public or themselves.
Typically in the United States, if a security officer turns off his body camera right before innocent people are harmed, no significant action is taken. However, mall cops are no mere police officers. We depend on these brave defenders of the peace in our most perilous shopping experiences. We cannot depend on them to defend Auntie Anne’s if we cannot see how they do it and trust in their methods. We rely on them to uphold these encapsulations of core American values, and yet they expect us to blindly trust them and their methods every time they turn their cameras off. Whether they are harassing Black Friday shoppers, or, more often, black shoppers, these sworn protectors of the food court are honor bound to be forthcoming and responsible. Due to a failure to uphold these responsibilities of ethics, transparency and objectivism, Officer Blart has been placed on paid leave and has received job offers from New York, Chicago and Baltimore police departments.