Tablet gifts filled with porn, grandma wants answers
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Imagine giving a child a gift, only to find out it contains images no child should ever see. As Chief Investigator Darcy Spears explains, that's exactly what happened to a local grandmother whose gifts gave some kids a naughty surprise.
The halls were decked and the gifts piled high, ready for what Heidi Walls hoped would be a truly memorable Christmas for her grandchildren.
"And I was so excited because I thought, this is one of the best gifts I've ever given them," said Heidi.
She shopped online at nomorerack.com, an e-tailer offering deep discounts on hot ticket items.
"So I looked and it was a really great price," said Heidi.
$70 for a brand new Google Android tablet. Heidi bought four of them for her grandkids ages 6,7,9 and 11.
Heidi hoped they would use them to do their homework play games and Facetime with their friends. The tablets arrived from Nomorerack in factory sealed boxes.
"All of it new. They came shrink - wrapped. They came in a box. It was nothing that would even lead me to assume there was anything wrong," explained Heidi.
Their first clue something was wrong were the wall chargers that came with the tablets.
"The plug wasn't a plug for America, It was like a European plug," said Heidi.
So they had to charge them through their computers.
"The next day I got a call from one of my other daughters saying there was pornography on the tablet that my grandkids saw," said Heidi.
She says the x-rated extras were hard core pornographic pictures as well as videos and even a carnal crossword, all pre - loaded on the tablets.
"It was men and women. Naked, with their genitalia out. Very graphic," said Heidi.
Explicit images she says popped up on the screens of all four tablets.
"I don't need a 6 year old knowing that kind of stuff. I feel like a horrible grandmother," said Heidi.
She immediately emailed Nomorerack's customer service department and got a response. It said "I apologize for all the inconvenience this has caused you. Please understand that we act as a middleman between the vendors and the customers."
"But as a company, middleman or not, you're responsible," said Heidi.
Nomorerack says it's their goal to deliver too good to be true deals and an amazing customer experience. Heidi's family experience was indeed amazing but in all the wrong ways. Heidi sent the tablets back and disputed the charge with her credit card company. She says all Nomorerack offered was a credit for her to come back and shop on their site.
"Why would I do that? Why would I want a credit? I don't know what's coming in the mail," said Heidi.
What she wants is an explanation for how this could happen. She turned to Contact 13 and we got answers she couldn't get.
Nomorerack's attorney says they've had several complaints about European plugs and believe Heidi's tablets came in a batch that wasn't properly marked.
As for the porn, he sent a written statement which said in part, "Nomorerack thanks our valued customer for bringing this issue to our attention; we take matters such as these very seriously. We are shocked that such images would appear on what to the best of our knowledge were brand new, unopened tablets distributed by one of Nomorerack's most reliable suppliers, and with the exception of this customer's experience, Nomorerack has not received any similar complaints about the thousands of other tablets purchased by our customers. We have requested that the supplier conduct a thorough investigation into this matter."
Heidi replaced the x- rated tablets with new ones bought on a different web site.
"They cost more, but now what is cost? For the $20 more I spent for each one, I would gladly pay that to take those images away. But I can't," said Heidi.
Nomorerack says this case shows the need to improve their customer service. After Contact 13 got involved, they did more than just credit Heidi's account. They refunded her and shipped four new tablets, free of charge. Heidi's experience is not unique. News accounts from Sacramento and Portland detail similar stories from this past Christmas of Children finding porn on new Android tablets purchased from major retails stores.