The same Jacksonville, Florida based company, Showbiz Promotions, who brought you the Michael Vick dog chew toys, recently attempted to market the “Caylee Sunshine Doll” as a tribute to murdered Caylee Anthony. It was immediately viewed by many to be in extremely poor taste.
A Florida company said it is halting planned sales of a wide-eyed doll called Caylee that was made as a “tribute” to a murdered Orlando girl with the same name.
The Jacksonville-based Showbiz Promotions was going to offer the “Inspirational Caylee Sunshine Doll,” named after 2-year-old Caylee Anthony, for $29.99 starting at noon Tuesday.
Initially, their site left you with a strong impression they would be donating a portion of the proceeds to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. However, the NCMEC quickly issued a statement disavowing any interest in receiving a donation.
Ernie Allen, President of NCMEC stated, “This effort is outrageous and attempts to exploit the tragic murder of a child for personal benefit. We would like the general public to understand that we are not involved in these efforts.”As a matter of policy the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children does not accept funds from the sale of any products that feature missing, murdered, recovered, or sexually exploited children. NCMEC does not and will not ever be associated with any attempt to commercialize or raise money in connection with the victimization of any child.
The last sentence appears to be in conflict with a link on their own site promoting a golf tournament; presumably a fund raising event.
In the photo there appears to be a missing child poster being held. Unless it is a sample, not involving an actual missing child, then it would seem to be an attempt to raise money in connection with the victimization of a child. Conversely, if it is an actual missing child and the goal was to publicize the disappearance, why not link to them on the site?
Update 04-10-09: On their website on March 5th Showbiz Promotions claims to have donated $5,000 to the NCMEC however, they acknowledge receipt of $10 on March 12th.
On January 29th the NCMEC in a statement indicated they would receive no monies from them. The article doesn’t mention if the $10 had been returned. Is the NCMEC concerned the donation wasn’t for the $5,000 or that they received any donation at all based on the earlier statement?
The lawsuit also claims the company sold a doll named for slain toddler Caylee Anthony and promised to give proceeds to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The lawsuit says only $10 has been donated.