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Chicago Store Owner Spent $300,000 To Reopen Destroyed Business After Riots, Only For It To Be Struck Again By Vandals

A Chicago shop owner thought he had a second chance after his store was destroyed during the riots and violence following George Floyd’s death in May, the Associated Press reported.

But that second chance was fleeting. After Walid Mouhammad, the owner of African Food & Liquor, spent $300,000 to reopen his store in Chicago when it was vandalized in May, surveillance video showed Monday the inside of his shop being robbed and ransacked for the second time, according to the Associated Press.

Mouhammad has worked at the West Side Chicago convenience store for 33 years, with 20 years as its owner. His store was vandalized in late May, when riots and protests broke out across the country following the death May 25 of George Floyd, who died after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for several minutes.

Mouhammad is unsure if he’ll be able to reopen again after his store was destroyed and emptied the second time. Police were blocks away when his landlord and several workers called 911 to report that people were trying to break into his store.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot warned vandals that the city would hold them accountable for their actions, but Chicago has continued to spiral into violence and crime.

Over 100 people were arrested and 13 officers were injured amid looting and violence Sunday in Chicago. The violence was  reportedly prompted by an officer-related shooting. High-end shops were broken into and looted, and even a Ronald McDonald House was vandalized while sick children and their parents slept inside.

Chicago is also experiencing a surge in crime.

The Chicago Police Department counted 105 murders in July alone, a 139% increase over July 2019, which saw 44 murders. Police counted 406 shooting incidents, a 75% rise compared to July 2019’s total of 232.

The city’s murders are up 50% when comparing the January-July periods from 2020 and 2019, and shootings have jumped 47% for the same period.

COLUMN BY

MARLO SAFI

Culture reporter.

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