COBB COUNTY, Ga. - A local father believes he and his disabled daughter were unfairly treated at a local restaurant.
They were at Chuck E. Cheese with a group of special needs children. The father wants to make sure what happened to them doesn't happen to any other children.
“Coming to a birthday party, (it was) the last thing we expected,” Mark Eschoe told Channel 2’s Erin Coleman.
Eschoe said his daughter, Marlee, was excited to attend a friend’s party at Chuck E. Cheese on May 18. The 8-year-old had just gotten out of the hospital after suffering two strokes within six months, caused by brain aneurisms.
“We were there for about 20 minutes when she finally said, ‘Hey daddy, I have to go to the bathroom,’” Eschoe said.
Eschoe said the men’s room was full at the Cobb Parkway location, but a waitress told him the women’s room was empty. He said as he started to take Marlee into the women's room, a manager stepped in, became agitated and said “No.”
“She just went, ‘You know what? I'm done. I'm not going to inconvenience my patrons. I don't care if she's special needs. I'm not going to treat her any differently,’” Eschoe said.
Eschoe and his wife, who was not there, said that violates the American’s with Disabilities Act, by not providing an alternative for their daughter.
An emailed statement from the Chuck E. Cheese corporate office in Texas said the women's restroom was occupied, and employees were working on an alternative solution. The statement also said the company has tried to contact the family, but the attempts have been unsuccessful.
The family said that's not the case.
"I definitely don't want any parent to go through what we went through," Marlee's mother, Kiyome Eschoe, said.
Chuck E. Cheese later said the surveillance video shows a woman entering the restroom before the incident, disproving the allegations.