You Ask. We Investigate.
Former 'Boobies Rock!' employee questions company's ethics
U of A student says for-profit company told her to mislead customers
Reporter: Justin Schecker
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - You may have seen the catchy T-shirts, koozies and bracelets that read "Boobies Rock!" during a night out on Fourth Ave. or while tailgating before a Wildcat football game.
All of the merchandise says "for breast cancer awareness," but recently, former employees across the country have come forward questioning where the money is really going.
A 9 On Your Side viewer said the company misled her in order to trick potential customers.
"They're pretty much just using this cause to earn money," U of A senior Kelly Hayes said. "The person who was my boss -- to say that she can give me bonuses if I hit certain goals, it just kind of didn't seem right."
Hayes said she contacted 9 On Your Side because she doesn't want more people to be fooled into thinking all of their money is going toward a good cause.
"I kind of feel like I scammed people," Hayes said of her two months working for the company. "I'm going to sell twenty dollar shirts to people who probably had five beers in them at a tailgate."
"Boobies Rock!" clearly states on its website, "We are not a non-profit organization but we contribute to several non-profit organizations each year."
When Hayes would sell the T-shirts and bracelets, she said she was told to read a different script.
"All the proceeds go to breast cancer awareness," Hayes said reading an email from one of her bosses.
"You're telling me you're a for-profit organization, but you're having people go out and say this," she added.
Owner and founder of "Boobies Rock!" Adam Shryock spoke with 9 On Your Side on the phone. He denied the company tells its promoters and models to mislead potential customers.
"Certainly, didn't come from me but I highly doubt it came from anyone that is an official representative of 'Boobies Rock!'" Shryock said.
Shryock told 9 On Your Side he's uncertain about the future of his company.
"But it sure would be unfortunate if we are no longer allowed to make contributions to charities because of how it's been misconstrued by the media," he said.
For Hayes, she just hopes others know what they're buying and where the money's going.
"That bothered me that they could honestly do this for such a good cause and take the money from people," Hayes said.
Former "Boobies Rock!" employees in other cities such as Denver and Chicago have come forward with stories similar to the one Hayes told 9 On Your Side. A Chicago Sun-Times report last week prompted the Illinois State Attorney General to open an investigation.
9 On Your Side called Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne's office, but has yet to hear back.