KFC has hired an investigator to look into claims a little girl with facial scars was asked to leave one of its restaurants.
The restaurant in Jackson, Mississippi, had already ordered an internal investigation following the allegations that three-year-old Victoria Wilcher was asked to leave because her scars were scaring other customers.
But KFC spokesman Rick Maynard says the company is concerned the restaurant's internal probe could not verify the incident.
An outside investigator will conduct an independent probe, he said.
The child was badly injured during an attack by a pitbull dog in April which left her with scars on her face and an eye patch.
The allegations were made earlier this month on the Facebook page Victoria's Victories, which follows the girl's recovery.
The story went viral, but the Laurel Leader-Call newspaper in Mississippi has since claimed the claims were a hoax.
The paper cites unnamed sources and suggests there were inconsistencies in the account.
Victoria's Victories - a site managed by Teri Rials Bates, the child's aunt - stood by its original allegations.
"I promise its (sic) not a hoax," said a posting on the page, denying any suggestions that the story might have been fabricated to elicit donations.
Mr Maynard said KFC's commitment of $30,000 to help with the child's medical bills will not be affected by the investigation's outcome.
The internal investigation is expected to report its conclusion on Friday. It is not clear when the independent investigation would report.
Orginal headline: KFC Widens Scarred Girl Probe Amid Hoax Claims
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