Utah mom says shirts are 'indecent,' buys them all

Woman complains about window display in PacSun store
Associated Press
Feb 18, 2014


A mother upset about "indecent" T-shirts on display at a Utah mall found a quick if not especially convenient way to remove them: She bought every last one.

Judy Cox and her 18-year-old son were shopping Saturday at the University Mall in Orem, about 40 miles south of Salt Lake City, when she saw the shirts in the window of a PacSun store.

The shirts featured pictures of scantily dressed models in provocative poses.

Cox said she complained about the window display to a store manager and was told the T-shirts couldn't be taken down without approval from the corporate office. She then bought all 19 T-shirts in stock, for a total of $567. She says she plans to return them later, toward the end of the chain store's 60-day return period.

The shirts cost about $28 each on the website for PacSun, which sells beach clothes for teenagers and young adults.

"These shirts clearly cross a boundary that is continually being pushed on our children in images on the Internet, television and when our families shop in the mall," Cox said in an email to The Associated Press. She said she plans to meet with Orem's city attorney Tuesday to discuss whether the images on the T-shirts violate city code.

The story was first reported by The Daily Herald of Provo.

An employee at the Orem store said Tuesday she wasn't authorized to speak about the issue and referred questions to the company's Orange County, Calif., corporate headquarters. PacSun CEO Gary Schoenfeld said in an emailed statement the company takes pride in the clothes and products it sells, which are inspired by music, art, fashion and action sports.

"While customer feedback is important to us, we remain committed to the selection of brands and apparel available in our stores," Schoenfeld said in the statement.

Orem is a city of about 90,000 in ultraconservative Utah County that uses the motto "Family City USA." Most residents belong to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which frowns on pornography and encourages its youth to dress and act modestly.

City code prohibits anyone from putting "explicit sexual material" on public display. The city defines that as "any material that appeals to a prurient interest in sex and depicts nudity, actual or simulated sexual conduct, sexual excitement, or sadomasochistic abuse."

The Orem city attorney wasn't immediately available for comment.

Cox said she wants her actions to make clear that these types of images are not acceptable for public display.

"I hope my efforts will inspire others to speak up within their communities," Cox said in an email. "You don't have to purchase $600 worth of T-shirts, but you can express your concerns to businesses and corporations who promote the display of pornography to children."

Longtime mall manager Rob Kallas said the display is down now because Cox bought all the shirts. He said the PacSun store manager told him she was embarrassed to put up the display but was following instructions from corporate managers.

Kallas said this is the first time he's received complaints about PacSun. But in the past, others have complained about images in the windows of Victoria's Secret. That's led to Orem city attorneys at least once asking the store to remove an image, he said.

Kallas didn't see the T-shirts in question until getting an email from Cox, but he said he agrees that they were inappropriate. Victoria's Secret has images of women in lingerie, but their clientele is different, he said.

"This is a store that caters to junior high and high school age kids," said Kallas, mall manager for 40 years. "Some of the poses were provocative and were inappropriate for a store catering to young people."

PacSun has 600 stores across the United States, the company's website shows.


4-wheeler al

no picture of t-shirt


I have looked, I can't find it anywhere.

SeƱor Clown

There's a gallery in the Ogden Standard Examiner writeup, but don't expect anything different from what you'd see in the Victoria's Secret window displays - http://www.standard.net/stories/...

yea right

which remember is related to the Sandusky register


Funny, the one shirt in the gallery that you posted I found in another story....there was a disclaimer that clearly stated it was NOT the shirt that was part of the story or in question. LOL. So it makes one wonder. I wonder what her 18 year old son thought while she was carrying on in the store. I think it would be funny if they didn't allow her to return them and she wastes the $600.

yea right

i like to know how it got past the sensors..they block anything like that..including tv

JMOP's picture

I like the moms approach, but what about:
1. She has caused more attention to the shirts.
2. When she returns them, they will be on the clearance rack, and more kids can afford them now.
3. The store could just reorder more shirts to put at the window display.

Stop It

"2. When she returns them, they will be on the clearance rack, and more kids can afford them now."

Could go either way. They may be more expensive because of the hype.


Orem is a more affluent community. I'm sure paying $26 for a tshirt pretty much amounts to chump change for most who shop there.

Truth or Dare

1st. Amendment right to self-expression? With that kind of $$$$, she may have been more helpful supporting The Model Alliance?! Better yet being from Utah, maybe she could sponsor a young female that has escaped marrying their Father's uncle?


That comment shows how little you know about Utah or the mainstream LDS church.


I took it upon myself to learn about the mainstream LDS church during the 2012 election, and also saw the Broadway Musical "Book of Mormon". Can we say...ridiculous, human-invented religion? Anyone who believes that the angel Moroni visited Joseph Smith is a moroni themselves...


Re: "I took (snip)"

Wonderful sense of intolerance from someone whose religion is the State.

I've studied Marxism ever since HS. That 'play' ends in mass suffering and death.

Erie County Resident

She is one of the best sales persons for the store.


I couldn't care any less than what I care right now.

Whiskey Tango F...

She has definitely insured that the only scantily clad woman in her sons future will be her. Thanks mom!


Instead of sweating this, gotta believe that they're saying:

Thanks for the free publicity!

Maybe she's a shill?


PacSun has a $190M mkt. cap.

It's a "penny stock."

For a couple mill, she could become a major investor, sway the board and make some REAL changes.


She frowns upon scantilly-clad women but I bet she lets her boy maim and kill animals all the time and shuts up when her husband has 6 wives.

thinkagain's picture

With a comment like that, please tell us how you chose the name Unassumer?

From the Grave

I wonder if you could wear those shirts to school?
The problem with women allowing themselves to be exploited like that is that is young men think that ALL women WANT to be treated like a sex object, which is NOT TRUE, of course. It's sad that a lot of young female athletes are posing for similar pictures these days, as if they think they have to to advance their careers.


How sad that real girls don't stand a chance. The total effect, from the advertising to how women are portrayed, has become "normalized pornography"!


If I was the store she would not get the money back


To all you perverts wanting a picture:) :)



You can see more on Facebook.


She'll be selling them on e bay when she can't get her $600 back. I really hope the store doesn't allow her to return them.


Shades of Rock & Roll. That'll move that product line! Just like Married with children & the woman from Michigan.


No worse than the Farrah Fawcett swimsuit poster I had as a teenager. Darn.


I put weekly magazines in some area store. One recent magazine was the Sports Illustrated magazine. One the cover was a picture of three girls with their backs facing the camera, wearing only a swim suit bottom, and they were touching each others butts. I refused to put it on display, I don't care if I get fired, I will not put up porn.


How disgusting. ICK.

Truth or Dare

Hey Knuckles; If you were commenting to me, I wasn't referring to the Church of Latter Day Saints as they've reformed, but rather the likes of Warren Jeff's and the FDLS Church located in Hildale, UT. and the polygamy scandal. What might the members of the LDS Church be doing to help young girls, women and their children to escape such abuses found in Utah, Texas, Arizona, Montana, Idaho? Anything? Anyone using the power of "religion" to defend such abuse might want to remove the veil of deceit!


I don't quite understand how all this venom and hatred came about toward the Church of JC of LDS?

Is the woman entitled or not to her opinion and actions regardless of her religious affiliation?

JudgeMeNot's picture

A fool and her money are soon parted.