After a home owned by Subway pitchman Jared Fogle was raided by police and federal agents on Tuesday in a search reportedly connected to a child porn investigation, the sandwich chain issued short statements to the press and on social media.
Fogle, who is widely known as "the Subway guy," became a company brand ambassador 15 years ago after losing 245 pounds on a diet consisting largely of Subway sandwiches.
The chain posted statements on its Facebook and Twitter pages shortly after 2 pm EST.
Links to the Jared's Journey section of the Subway website were routing users back to the chain's homepage as of Tuesday afternoon.
Asked for comment, Subway senior PR manager Cindy Carrasquilla deferred to the chain’s PR firm Catalyst.
"We are shocked about the news and believe it is related to a prior investigation of a former Jared Foundation employee," Subway told PRWeek via email. "We are very concerned and will be monitoring the situation closely. We don’t have any more details at this point."
On Tuesday afternoon, Subway emailed PRWeek an updated statement, explaining that the company and Fogle have "mutually agreed" to suspend their relationship due to the current investigation.
"Jared continues to cooperate with authorities and he expects no actions to be forthcoming," the statement said. "Both Jared and Subway agree that this was the appropriate step to take."
The raid took place just two months after the arrest of Russell Taylor, executive director of Fogle's nonprofit, the Jared Foundation, on child pornography and exploitation charges.
In a statement at the time, Fogle said he was shocked by the allegations and was severing all ties with Taylor.
The chain did not indicate if it would pull ads featuring Fogle in light of the investigation.
"Subway" was a top trending topic on Twitter on Tuesday.
The consensus among communications pros on the platform on Tuesday was that if Fogle is charged, Subway will face a serious corporate crisis.
What's happening to @Subway right now is both why PR is a terrible career and also why Brand Humans like Jared and Flo are a terrible idea.— Ben Collins (@bencollins) July 7, 2015
FBI agents search Subway spokesman Jared Fogle's home http://t.co/jQE4DBYd0y Anyone else hear that PR train wreck coming down the track?— : Brendan O'Malley : (@brendanomalley5) July 7, 2015
This story was updated on July 7 with Subway's updated statement about suspending its relationship with Fogle.