You Be the Judge: Angry Mom v. Knott's Berry Farm's Soak City

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The litigants: angry mother Karen Roberson and Knott's Berry Farm management in Buena Park.

The allegation: Soak City employees and Knott's Berry Farm management halfheartedly dealt with two teen boys with camera phones in the women's locker room before closing Tuesday, July 31.

The venue:

Ms. Roberson's case: "I took my daughter (age 2), niece (age 12) and my niece's best friend (age 12) to Knott's Soak City Orange County on Tuesday July 31, 2012. As we ended our day at the park, my girls and I headed to the women's locker to change our clothes and head home. We entered the locker and noticed two teenage young men walking around the locker room. A parent notified the bathroom attendant about the young men. The attendant asked the young men to exit the locker and they did not. The attendant called for a supervisor to come help with the situation.

"I decided to take my girls to the other side of the locker room. I assumed the young men had left and began to undress my daughter and I. I turned around and saw the young men standing there with backpacks and camera phones looking at me, my girls and the rest of the females getting dressed and undressed. A lot of the women and children did not even notice they were being watched.

"At this point I immediately told my niece and her friend to go into the dressing room stall to get dressed. I hurried and covered up my daughter and myself. Completely disgusted and uncomfortable at this point, I approached the bathroom attendant and asked why were these males were still in the locker room. She asked the young men to leave and they didn't.

"After I dressed myself, I gathered my girls and requested to speak with a supervisor. By the time the supervisors came, the teenage young men had left. I explained what happened to three different supervisors and the security guard. It appeared to me they thought I was lying about what happened so I asked my niece to go and get the attendant. She came out and confirmed what happened.

"The security guard told me they couldn't control people's actions. I said to him if they would have responded in a timely manner, these young men could have been detained and investigated. We could have possibly been videoed or photographed. They ended up giving my children a sucker and a water toy and said sorry. Now, feeling insulted, I asked to speak with the manager.

"When the park manager came, I began to explain the incident. He totally downplayed the incident and stated there was nothing they could do and they could not control others' actions. I then requested a refund or a pass to bring my family back to hopefully have a better experience. The park manager said, 'You were here most of the day so you got your day's worth.' His demeanor and behavior shocked me. I said I was not looking for anything free and he stated in front of everyone, including my girls, "Well, it looks like you're looking for a freebie to me.' It was humiliating! So I told him, given all the information I provided, the two young men being in the women's locker room watching minors and women getting dressed and undressed, possibly photographing or taping them nude, and all he could focus on is not giving my family something free?

"I requested the number to the corporate office. He asked one of the supervisors to tear a piece of paper and write the park number down. I was not given a park business card. My family and I were not taken to the office to make an official report. He did not take our information or statement nor was the police called. I had to make a police report myself. Management did nothing regarding this incident. NOTHING!!

"What happened at Knott's Soak City OC was inappropriate on so many different levels, from being looked at by teenage boys with camera phones inside of the ladies locker room to being humiliated and insulted by the park management and sent home with no help and no regard to what happened. Incidents like this happen every day to people like myself and big corporations like them tend to try and protect themselves instead of making sure these types of incidents don't take place. Had they responded in a timely manner, those boys could have been detained and the police called. It is their responsibility to keep us safe and they failed to do so. I called the corporate office and made a complaint on Aug. 1, 2012, and no one has contacted me back.

". . . On behalf of my children, those little girls, teenage girls, women and myself that had to experience such an uncomfortable and inappropriate situation, I would like to bring awareness to this incident in hopes it will never happen again. Everyone should be treated equally and with respect no matter what color or gender you are."

Knott's defense begins on the next page . . .

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I think the truth of what happened is somewhere between what the mom has stated and what Knott's Berry has stated. How come she was the only person to notice these two males in the locker room? I find it a little hard to believe that at closing, with everyone changing clothes, that no one else saw them or said anything. If the park manager met with the mom, he certainly has the ability to refund or comp them another visit, and it could have been discussed in an office or even off to the side out of the way of the rest of the public. I don't think we've heard the "entire" story from both sides on what happened and what was discussed between the mom and park management.  


1) the boys were old enough to know what they were doing.

2) they knew they should not have inside the women's locker room (wait for mom outside).

there SHOULD be an attendant for both the women and men's locker rooms.

sounds like knotts isn't into using their funds to hire minimum wage personnel to stand at entrances of the locker rooms anyone's safety.

knotts is located in an area known for possession/sales of drugs.

knotts BAD.



Coker! You and Gus should be ashamed of yourselves.

ltpar topcommenter

I vote for the mom over Knotts Berry Farm, although her asking for a refund or pass was tacky at best.  The first call the attendant made should been to Security, not her supervisor (Poor training).  The attitude of the responding Security people was absolutely unacceptable and smells of untrained personnel (Lack of Training).  The mom describes the kids as teen agers not 10 year olds.  Looks like Knotts is trying to cover their ass (Bad Public Relations).  The two males should have been detained, their phones seized and the Police notified.  Depending on an investigation, interrogation and records check on the subjects, an arrest may or may not have been warranted (Proper Security procedures)  If parents cannot feel secure with their kids being at Knotts Berry Farm, business will suffer (Profit loss).  Then, the Managers attitude demonstrated even worse customer relations than that of Security (More lack of training). The bullshit rationalization he used left a lot to be desired and I am sure that it is not consistent with the customer relations policy of Knotts Berry Farm.  To repair the mistakes the Security people had already paid, the family should have been given a future pass to the park and I would have even thrown in a free dinner (Common sense and good relations).  The bad publicity Knotts will get over this inicident could have easliy been avoided with a little customer relations and sympathy from the Manager.  It would appear that Knotts Berry Farm has both a Security and Managment problem which needs to be rectified at the earliest possible time (Will they do this or cirle the wagon)? 


Why didn't mom return the favor, and use her cell phone to take pic's of the boys in action? Just saying. But yeah, no matter how busy, or madcap the end of the day is/was, why weren't there guards nearby? Why didn't anyone with the forthsight to avoid a lawsuit, and bad publicity to K.B.Farm, give this concerned mother aid? A lot of questions left unanswered.


 @ltpar It seems they are already in the "Circle the Wagons" mode.  I thought Soak City was a big flop already I drive by there often, and it always looks empty. Judging from the other 2 comments I believe we have a majority against the park.

Knotts Berry Farm Corporation=GUILTY. And now since Corporations are now people, perhaps the entire board of directors & stock holders should be tried en masse and sent to Soak!

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