PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Police are looking for the suspect that spray-painted hateful vandalism at The Better Box takeout restaurant in Northeast Philadelphia.
The young Black business owner has been dealing with back-to-back incidents and she doesn’t think it’s coincidental. In fact, during an altercation, one of her employees was told “they don’t belong here.”READ MORE: 6 Day Workweeks And Poked By Needles: YaFavTrashman Fighting For Philadelphia Sanitation Workers' Safety
Now police are involved in the investigation.
“We specialize in egg rolls. It’s basically a classic Chinese takeout with a Philly twist,” The Better Box owner Tamekah Bost said.
The Better Box also happens to be a Black-owned business.
Bost is a young entrepreneur who has been in business for three-and-a-half years now.
“We started with a food truck and that’s how we built our following up,” Bost said. “So, our customers pretty much travel to us.”
The Asian Fusion eatery transitioned into a storefront nearly two years ago after so much community support. But recently, the restaurant located at 8601 Frankford Ave., has dealt with back-to-back incidents.
The first one happened at the end of April after a customer demanded food on a day The Better Box was closed.READ MORE: Police: 2 Teens In Car Shot At Red Light In Philadelphia's Olney Neighborhood
“A verbal back and forth happened, and that customer actually used a racial slur and pulled down his mask and spit on my employee,” Bost said.
That employee was so fearful as a result of the altercation that he quit, but the customer was arrested. Just a few weeks later, Bost discovered her business vandalized and she believes the events are connected.
“What was spray-painted on our walls, we couldn’t make it out,” Bost said. “But we assume that it was a reference to saying ‘free my friend. Free my Brodie.’”
This is surveillance video of the vandal. The spray paint has since been removed, and the incident is being investigated by Philadelphia police.
Bost is hoping to move past these back-to-back occurrences and continue to spread love through food.
“Please, just do not destroy our property. Do nothing come here with hate,” Bost said. “Come here with love and empty stomachs so we can feed you and leave it at that.”MORE NEWS: 14 Arrested On More Than 120 Charges Related To NorthPak Gang Violence In Wilmington
Bost says police have received several tips about the vandalism, but so far, an arrest has not been made. If you have any information that could help, contact police.