Meseret Bekele, owner of the Foggy Bottom Grocery on F Street, said she goes to work every day in fear of being robbed again.
A man with a gun entered the grocery on Oct. 10 and stole more than $500 after forcing Bekele at gunpoint to the basement, where the store’s safe was kept, according to a police report. The man, described as a tall black male in his 30s, ran into the street and escaped the scene, despite being chased by a passerby. Police said they have not made any arrests in the case.
Bekele, an Ethiopian immigrant in her 60s, still operates the grocery by herself, often manning the cash register alone.
“I am still very scared,” Bekele said. “If I had heard something, anything, from the police, I would feel better, but I have heard nothing since the day of the robbery.”
She said she plans to install more security cameras in the grocery store, but is waiting on a price estimate.
“We have to,” she said of the additional security. “We don’t have a choice.”
Bekele could not claim the money from her insurance company because the amount stolen was too small. But Bekele said she is more concerned that she has not heard anything from authorities since the day of the incident.
“My regular customers come in here and they ask if anything has happened, if I know any new information, but it has been a month and I’ve heard nothing,” she said.
Bekele said that although the man’s face was covered during the robbery, her neighbor saw him leave the store and described him to her.
“I think that if the police knew anything they would tell me,” she said. “So I am still waiting. Maybe they won’t catch him until he commits another crime. Who knows?”