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NORCROSS, GA (CBS ATLANTA) -
A local billboard ad did more than just capture the attention of people in Norcross, it has scared several children.
The billboard, which shows an advertisement for Georgia Prosthodontics, is located right next to a daycare called Legacy Academy at Berkeley Lake.
The ad shows a before-and-after close-up photo of a person in need of dental work and what that person's smile looks like after the work is done.
Ami Bombardieri, the director of the daycare, said she's had many children in tears over the photo on the billboard.
My biggest concern is that it's not age appropriate," Bombardieri said.
Bombardieri told CBS Atlanta News parents have requested that the ad be removed so their children don't have to look at it.
"They're afraid to go outside on the playground because it overlooks their playground and these are little toddlers, and it's just not OK," Bombardieri said.
Gordon Tomlinson said his 3-year-old daughter won't even look at the billboard when he picks her up from daycare.
"She at first started crying, ‘Daddy, that's a scary billboard,' and covered her eyes and every time she goes outside, she covers her eyes and runs straight to the car," Tomlinson said.
Jordon London said his son also doesn't like the billboard.
"Well, he's covered his eyes before, but generally he just doesn't like it," London said. "He just thinks it's a scary image and it bothers him."
Staff at Legacy Academy said they contacted both the dental and billboard companies a few weeks ago, but never got a response.
However, once CBS Atlanta News contacted both parties on Thursday, they issued an apology and said they would be replacing the billboard within five days.
"That would be absolutely wonderful and really all I was asking for - not necessarily for them to take it down, because I do understand they need to market since they're a company because it's advertising - was just to switch the two pictures," Bombardieri said. "The picture on the other side is an older lady, a regular happy looking lady. So if they would switch that the children would see that and that's all we were asking for."
Thursday afternoon, an attorney for Dr. Carlos Castro, the owner of Georgia Prosthodontics, gave the following statement to CBS Atlanta News:
"Recently, Dr. Carlos Castro, owner of Sonria Dental Care/Georgia Prosthodontics, received notification that the children attending Legacy Academy Berkeley Lake may be frightened by their billboard that is located on Peachtree Industrial Boulevard [Norcross, Gwinnett County]. Dr. Castro, who is extremely concerned about the health, safety and welfare of children, is working diligently with CBS Outdoor to ensure that the billboard is immediately removed. Dr. Castro sincerely regrets any type of inconvenience that this may have caused the parents of the children that attend Legacy and offers his sincere apology to the children that attend Legacy, Legacy Academy and the surrounding community. Hopefully, with the assistance of CBS Outdoor, the billboard will be immediately removed."
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