DECATUR (CBS46) — While working security at South DeKalb Mall, D’Andre Clark said he spotted rodents crawling on shelves at the American Deli inside the Food Court.
“I was just doing my normal patrols, and I was going in certain patterns, and I was making my way through the Food Court, and I saw something actually move,” Clark said.
He took cell phone video of the rodent infestation which has now been seen by hundreds of thousands of people online.
It even got the attention of state and local health officials. DeKalb County suspended American Deli’s permit, forcing the restaurant to close until further notice.
“It’s disturbing, yes, but I’m not surprised,” mall shopper Cheryl Johnson said.
The DeKalb County Health Department also issued a notice of violation to mall management ordering them to have their buildings rat-proofed in the next three days or face legal action.
“There’s no telling how many people actually ate there before, myself included, and I don’t know if they ran around and touched the food or had anything else introduced inside of it that could have had me or so many other people sick,” Clark said.
Mall management informed us they are working with the county to resolve the pest problem and will provide a progress report on Thursday.
“Them running around in the storefront, that could have been prevented,” Clark said.
As for D’Andre Clark, he was suspended from his security job after his video went viral.
“I’m not even sure if I’m going to go back or if they’re going to allow me to go back, I couldn’t tell you. I just had to let everybody know, that’s disgusting,” Clark said.
CBS46 contacted mall management and the security company about Clark's suspension, and they sent us this statement:
"All Gallery at South DeKalb restaurant tenants are required to follow a strict set of parameters pertaining to food safety, food processing procedures & guests’ health set forth by their lease agreements and local and state food service guidelines and safety standards. Due to the nature of operating within an older building, the Mall has always and will continue to conduct very frequent pest control visits and regular rodent treatments from a third party provider. We want to ensure all our guests and friends of South DeKalb that we take this footage very seriously and your health and safety are of [utmost] importance to us as we work closely with the DeKalb County Board of Health to resolve the issues and to continue to uphold sanitization standards. We have been in daily contact with the county and the plan of action and voluntary progress report will be submitted by July 29. American Deli remains closed while they make repairs. We’re unable to speak on employment measures taken by the third party property security team and recommend reaching out to them directly for more information."