Aug 6, 2013 12:17 AM by Tony Spehar - firstname.lastname@example.org
A toy won in a crane game at the Pueblo West Walmart that some say resembles a human fetus raised a stir for some local parents.
On Saturday morning a 4-year-old playing a Fun Shoppe crane game scooped up a golden egg, when he and his grandmother opened the egg they found a small, red rubber figure that the grandmother thought looked like a fetus.
"My mother-in-law was kind of bothered by the toy that was inside there so she saved it for me to take a look at," the boy's mother, who will be called "Jane" for this story as she doesn't want her identity revealed. "I looked at it and I thought it's a fetus."
Jane said her first reaction was that the toy was either a sick joke or a political statement about abortion.
"It's just not something appropriate for a 4-year-old, whether you're pro-choice or whether you're pro-life it's just not something really that you want to discuss with a 4-year-old," she explained. "I told him that it was something for grown-ups in there and I took it out."
There were several other golden eggs in the machine, so News 5 won one and found the same type of rubber figure inside. Management at Walmart said the crane machine was operated and stocked by another company, so News 5 called a customer service number on the machine.
"The piece definitely looks offensive," said Jim Sevalt, Vice President of Operations at National Entertainment Network, the company that operates the machine.
Sevalt said the situation was the result of misunderstanding and a mistake by the company. He explained the figure isn't a fetus, it's supposed to be a baby alien. The figures are normally sold from vending machines which advertise that they are aliens. However, somehow the eggs and aliens were inadvertently put in the crane machine. With no advertisement that aliens are one of the prizes, Sevalt said Jane's reaction to finding one was understandable.
"The assumption is that it's not a baby alien, it's a baby fetus," Sevalt said. "It's very offensive."
Still, Jane said she wasn't comfortable with the toys being available if they so closely resemble a fetus.
"To me I think there's a real similarity between the popular image of an alien and what a fetus looks like," she explained. "I just really wanted more than anything for them to take these out of there so that other people weren't shocked by this like we were."
According to Sevalt the remaining alien prizes were removed from the machine on Monday afternoon. The company also sent a free box of stuffed animals to Jane's family as an apology.