ANDERSON, Ind. —
The guidelines are in place to “offer a safe, secure and pleasant shopping environment.”
Hoodies are actually listed in the code's first regulation.
“Appropriate, non-offensive attire; shirts and shoes must be worn; no hoodies or other apparel that will disguise identity,” the document states.
Other regulations include not wearing gang-related items and no backpacks are allowed.
A prohibition of firearms and weapons is listed third in the guidelines.
Cynthia Potter, 55, of Anderson had not noticed the signs either until they were pointed out. Potter and a friend walk inside the mall during the colder months.
“It makes me question the security and what prompted them to put those kinds of signs up and what has this place turned into,” she said. “They are being ‘hoodie’ specific — that is what the younger kids wear all the time.”
Shopping in other malls
Jesse Tron, a spokesman for the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) in New York, N.Y., said he is not aware of other shopping centers posting similar signs.
“Each one is different,” Tron said of the business rules. “The general concept is they wouldn’t want you covering your face or obscuring it. Typically there is a reason they use that particular language. Maybe there has been an issue.”
Mounds Mall is not a member of ICSC, which represents 63,000 members in 90 countries around the world.
Braun denied that there was a specific incident that prompted the new signage, but a year ago a man was accused of kidnapping an 81-year-old woman at knifepoint from the Mounds Mall parking lot.
Jimmy Nave Jr., 33, of Anderson was convicted and sentenced to a 38 years in prison for the crime.
Indiana shopping centers owned by Simon Property Group Inc. do not have signage on their entrances, said Les Morris, a spokesman for the company.