‘Fat people are harder to kidnap’: Ohio pizza shop’s billboard taken down after criticism

BARBERTON, Ohio — When a billboard slogan hits your eye like a big pizza pie -- that’s not amore.

An Ohio pizza shop noted for its cheesy billboard slogans is not feeling the love over a recent sales pitch that asserted, “Fat people are harder to kidnap."

The slogan was the brainchild of Jeremy Clemetson, who owns East of Chicago Pizza in Barberton, WOIO reported. He said be began putting up amusing billboards about six months ago.

The owner of a Barberton pizza place says when he put this billboard up he thought it was funny, but a lot of people...

Posted by Kelly Kennedy on Monday, January 27, 2020

"We’ve had, ‘Legalize marinara,' ‘Our pizza is deep as potholes,’ ‘Free box with every pizza,’” Clemetson told the television station.

However, the billboard in the nearby city of Norton struck a nerve, and Clemetson is feeling the heat.

"You shouldn't make a joke about kidnapping regardless of what it is," Laura Hochsteteler told WOIO.

“I just think that was poor taste, very poor taste, very offensive,” Lisa Archibald told the television station.

Pat Canforia said Clemetson's marketing skills were effective. "I see it as kind of funny myself, and yeah it definitely worked because he's getting massive advertising and broadcasting over it," he told WOIO.

Clemetson said he was not trying to offend anyone, but removed the billboard when he was told January was national human trafficking awareness month. That angle never entered his mind.

"I was more just trying to be funny. I actually had it on my sign out front for three weeks and nobody said anything except funny things about it," Clemetson told WOIO. "Once I found out, you know, I have seven kids myself. That it was more sensitive to people because of the kidnapping aspect we actually took it down today."

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