Uh-oh! Toy store accused of ‘setting trap’ for boy who knocked over HK$33,600 Teletubby statue

A toy store in Mong Kok is facing a public backlash after it accused a boy of “kicking” a human-sized Teletubby sculpture. Photo: Facebook/Din Dong
A toy store in Mong Kok is facing a public backlash after it accused a boy of “kicking” a human-sized Teletubby sculpture. Photo: Facebook/Din Dong

A toy store in Mong Kok is facing a public backlash after it accused a boy of “kicking” a human-sized Teletubby sculpture and then asked his parents to pay HK$33,600 (US$4,281) for the broken toy. 

The reason for the backlash can be seen in a video circulating online showing the moment the boy accidentally knocked over the 1.8-meter tall golden Laa-Laa doll which was not protected in any way from the large crowd in the store. From the video, it appears the statue fell just because the boy leaned back on it slightly.

In a message posted to Facebook on Monday, the boy’s mother said she visited the Kk Plus toy store in Langham Place on Sunday with her family. 

“I was not paying attention and suddenly heard a loud bang,” the post read.

“I turned back and saw the doll with a broken head. The first thing the store employee said was that my son kicked the doll.”

The Facebook user said she and her husband immediately paid for the statue. The original listed price was HK$52,800 (US$6,727), but they were given a discounted price at HK$33,600 (US$4,281).

She added both of them and their son were in shock. 

While the mom admitted that the onus lay on them as parents, regardless of whether her son broke the item deliberately or unintentionally, she said she was unhappy that the store had accused her son of kicking the sculpture. 

“I only realized that I had scolded my son wrongly after receiving a clip [of the incident],” she said.

She added it was already “unreasonable” to not have any barriers around such an expensive sculpture. “But to accuse [my son] of kicking the doll is a fraud,” she said. 

While some netizens said the parents should have kept an eye on their boy, most internet users agreed with the mother that the store should have done more to protect the expensive product.

One netizen said the store was “deliberately setting a trap” by putting such an expensive item out with no barriers. 

“If the toy injures a child, it could be very serious,” he added.

Many also slammed the store in the comments of its most recent Facebook post, with one calling it an “unscrupulous shop”.

“There is no base [securing the doll] or barriers surrounding it,” pointed out another. “Your shop is not big, it’s a matter of time that the doll will break. I’m not saying that the parents are not responsible, but your shop has a bigger responsibility.”

The boy’s father told Commercial Radio on Tuesday that his son, aged 5, had asked him three times why the doll was “so scary”.

He added that he regretted blaming his son from the start, before understanding the matter fully and watching the footage of the accident. 

The father also said that his son has not calmed down from the incident and had to take a day off from school on Tuesday. 

Kk Plus initially issued a statement on Facebook saying the matter had been settled by mutual consent. 

But after a deluge of negative comments, it deleted the post on Tuesday morning. 

A staff member at the Langham Place store told reporters on Tuesday that the head office had communicated with the parents and child involved in the morning, but he did not have any information about the results of the meeting. 

He added that the company would post the latest updates about the incident on its social media accounts. 

The staff member also said the company would review the incident and stressed the store would provide “a safe environment for customers to shop.”

He added that they have put aside exhibits that are over 1-meter tall and that the company agreed there should be barriers or protection for larger exhibits. 

Kidsland International, the parent company of the toy store, issued an apology on Tuesday late afternoon and said it had given a full refund to the family. 

Editor’s note: The story has been updated to include the refund and apology by Kk Plus’s parent company.

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