(AURORA, Colo.) — The owner of a Colorado company accused of refusing to massage a woman because of her weight has denied the allegation.
“She was never refused service and she was never called fat,” owner Penny Wells of the Natural Healing Center in Aurora told ABC News on Thursday.
Wells contacted ABC News on Thursday after declining to respond to repeated requests for comment on Wednesday.
Would-be customer Laura Smith said she entered the Natural Healing Center last month, hoping for a massage to relieve the aftereffects of a half-marathon she had run the day before.
“I ran 13.1 miles. I was hurting just from that in and of itself,” Smith, 31, told ABC News this week. “I was really looking forward to the massage. I was going to relax.”
Instead, Smith said, the owner “was very matter of fact about it. She said, ‘I’m really sorry, but you’re just too fat for our table. You’ll probably break [it] and have to pay for it.'”
Wells denies the accusations.
At 6-foot-3 with an athletic build, the 250-pound Smith said massages at other places have never been an issue.
“I was just kind of in shock,” she recalled of the Jan. 21 incident. “When it sunk in, I just started to cry, then I grabbed my stuff and left.”
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