The decoration was discovered by a customer in a North Andover, Massachusetts, franchise of the popular restaurant

Credit: Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty

One McDonald’s is in hot water due to a Halloween decoration that customers deemed insensitive and offensive.

The decoration, which depicted a person hanging from a noose in a tree, was noticed by customer Erik Pocock in the North Andover, Massachusetts, restaurant last Tuesday, as he described to local news outlet WCVB.

“It looked like a typical Halloween decoration,” he told the outlet. “It said ‘Happy Halloween.’ It had some spiderwebs and some spiders and, like, a haunted tree and I was like: ‘Oh, that’s cute,’” he said. “Then, you look closer and that’s not cute. That’s not right.”

“More like a lynching, but you could have taken it either way,” Pocock added.

Pocock shared a video of the controversial decoration on his Twitter account, which has since been made private, according to

After Pocock’s video began to spread around social media, many people found the Halloween decoration to be offensive and shared their outrage on Twitter.

“Hanging by a tree represents either lynching or suicide, there’s no playful middle ground. It’s sick. Effing sick,” wrote one user.

“Definitely not appropriate. Why are we associating Halloween with lynching which obviously this is undoubtedly a display of such an act,” said another.

Chuck Lietz, owner and operator of the McDonald’s restaurant in North Andover, issued an apology on behalf of the franchise to PEOPLE on Tuesday.

“We deeply regret that these decorations were on display, and as soon as we identified the inappropriate content, we immediately removed the decorations display. Creating an environment that is welcoming and inclusive to all our guests and employees is critically important to us, and we apologize for any unintended offense they may have had on our community.”,” Lietz said in the statement.