ROCK HILL, S.C. (CBS Local) — A South Carolina man said he was kicked out of a shopping mall because he looked too much like Santa Claus.
The Santa look-alike, Robert Allen, goes everywhere decked out in his signature red and white costume. With a long gray beard and a little round belly, it’s a look he’s been working on for a decade.
“All of sudden everybody is like, ‘You look just like Santa Claus,'” he told CBS affiliate WBTV.
Allen, who jokingly calls himself “Robby Claus,” said he travels the state trying to get people to laugh and spread a little love over the Christmas season. But, dressing up as Kris Kringle apparently has its pitfalls.
Kicked out for looking like Kris Kringle?
This "Santa" out of Rock Hill says the Galleria is on his "naughty" list this year after mall security told him to go away. He says it doesn't make sense.
Mall reps say "he confuses the children" Story at 11 pic.twitter.com/5TjkhMbO38
— Bria Bell (@BriaBellTV) December 10, 2019
Allen says he was recently eating lunch with his family at the Rock Hill Galleria in Rock Hill when mall security asked him to leave.
“You can’t come in here. I said, ‘Why?’ You look too much like Santa Clause. I said, ‘What, all I want to do is get some lunch,'” said Allen.
Representatives for the mall told WBTV it has an exclusive contract with another Santa so it’s not allowed to have any Santa look-alikes hanging around.
They say Allen is welcome back any time as long as he ditches the Santa look. But Allen says he’s putting the Galleria mall is on his “naughty” list this holiday season.
“They are going to get a bag of coal without the coal in it,” he said.