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Two stores on Cary Street raided by Richmond Police

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RICHMOND, Va. --Two unusual Thursday afternoon raids by Richmond Police, just six blocks apart The Fan on W. Cary Street, shut down the Sunny Food Market and DJ Market and Deli.

The search warrants were executed after a long investigation into stolen goods, police said. They are investigating whether the goods sold in the stores were legally obtained.

Although several workers were handcuffed, it’s was unclear Thursday if any were charged.

These were high-profile raids, with plenty of pedestrians and neighbors chatting about it, as well as motorists stopping to ask what was going on.


The mood of the raid at the Sunny Food Market (2700 W. Cary Street) had a serious tone.

Two workers were handcuffed outside as investigators boxed up apparent evidence inside. Patrons at the Cary Street Café across the street watched from the deck there. One of the handcuffed workers appeared to  pass out and had to be taken away by ambulance, holding his chest painfully.

Jordan Hunter, a regular customer who lives nearby, said she could hardly believe what she was seeing.

“It’s a little surprising to see these guys, who I thought were really good guys, in this situation,” she said.

Six blocks east, outside the DJ Market and Deli, the mood was much lighter, even though nearby residents said they depended on the market not only for daily needs, but for food and kindness.

DJ Market

“This store just helps everybody in the neighborhood,” said nearby resident Carolyn Johnson.

Regulars who are short a little money could make their purchases and pay up later, she said. There was also cheap coffee with a free donut in the morning.

The DJ Market building has long roots in the neighborhood as a source for fried food like fish and chicken. For nearby residents without cars, it was the closest place for a meal.

Richmond Police said there will be more information Friday. Investigators took numerous cardboard boxes filled with items out of both buildings.


  • Jose

    Mark Holmberg is very incorrect in his report of this story. The reason why these stores were raided was due to the fact that they by stolen property to resell to mostly the same people he included in his interview. Most people that frequent the corner and “hang out” by DJ deli are drug addicted, dealing drugs, or involved in some type of criminal activity. I Live in the neighborhood right next to the 3rd precinct. The problem with these stores is that they put in “orders” where they take a local that is addicted to narcotics and send him to a local store to “shop” in this case steal these items so they can be sold to the owners for a fraction of the cost to these stores which in turn then they sell at a markup to the local community. I know first had because I have caught multiple shoplifters in the Circle K store right up the street from DJ deli. During conversations with these perps they have told me they shoplift to support their addiction and on 2 occasions have confessed to selling these stolen items at these other stores in question. So we have so called “good neighborhood delis” buying stolen merchandise taken from other local stores sold to them by drug addicted individuals that are destroying their lives and neighborhood in the process. Sad but it seems in my eyes that 60% of the people hang out on the corner of this DJ deli were brought up with 3 rules in life. Lie, Cheat, and Steal which is sad. I’ve worked with these some of these immigrants, and know there “under the table policies” I’ve watched them send people to the local Cvs to steal batteries, razors, red bulls, etc. Any product they that is in high demand and easy to sell will be brought by these individuals. They don’t care where they have come from. They will see the marked price with a store name and instead of questioning where these goods are coming from or maybe calling these stores to find out if they are missing this inventory they purchase the goods for resale. Then we the people that are struggling, trying to live life by the rules suffer, living in a neighborhood wondering if they are gonna break into my house or car next to fuel their addictions.. Paying higher prices at the truly good neighborhood stores due to the fact that they lose money and product resulting from items being stolen from their stores. So Mark if you would like to get the other side of the story, the true facts here they are. If you would like to talk more about the truth you can reach my by email. Thank you.

  • jose

    Yeah the run and hide attitude. Just let them take over, wow that was a great answer. Watch the news, if you move they follow. They come your neighborhood and break into your car, steal your christmas gifts from your trunk at local walmart. Moving is not the answer, speaking up and picking up the phone calling 911 is the answer. Stand up for your community and make a change.

  • Jose

    Thank you Mr MARK HOLMBURGER you know exactly what I am talking about. Agree with you 100% was disappointed in the other Mark, as you said I’ve always liked his work but he was lost on this one.

  • Concerned Resident

    Jose I could not agree with you more I live in the area as well and these stores are known for allowing criminal activity..they even promote it. Shut the BP down as well across the street..I live in the neighborhood and there are too many drug dealers,drug addicts and prostitutes that come to that area just to do their dirt clean up my neighborhood Richmond City Police I am begging you!!!! I don’t even feel safe letting my children come outside unless it is too the car and back. A change has to come.

  • kitty

    Well the cops are doing their job….by cracking down….and I will always love the west end I was raised there so I seen alot from the 80’s until now…..and it has always been safe for regardless of the riff Raff…but these new store owners are the problem they encourage the riff Raff….shut them down…..#ilovethewestend

  • John

    The reporting on this story was good. The reporter, Mark, was getting all the information he could at the time. The Police were going to give an interview. The store owners in handcuffs couldn’t give an interview. So Mark talked to anyone on the street that wanted to be on camera and had an opinion. He simply got their opinions of the stores in question. If you had been there, and were willing to voice your opinion on camera, I’m sure Mark would have loved to get your take. Yet, you guys did get your opinions into the story via the comment section. We now know that there are some people that adored the stores and their owners, and a segment of people that saw them as facilitating criminal activity.

  • Malt Liquor Land

    I live a block away from the Sunny Market. It’s a magnet for suspicious activity. When I call the police to report what I see, I’m lucky if they can get a patrol car out within an hour. The manager of the Sunny Market has a silent alarm under his counter. If he sees a suspicious person, he pushes the button and the police swarm the place in less than 10 minutes. There are always police cars there because the patrol officers take their breaks there but they make it clear they don’t want to talk to longtime residents like me. We are an annoyance for them. Good work RPD! Thank you for FINALLY doing your job!

  • Dave

    I’m with MARK HOLMBURGER, pony- tailed liberal twists are why I usually flip the channel when that guy appears. Please report the news, not your hand- wringing, subtle cop bashing, hug a thug agenda.

  • manalishi

    So they get endless grants and guaranteed loans to start a business without paying taxes for years. Is anyone surprised that they would feel exempt to operate above any other law? What’s their visa status?

  • Kenneth M

    I am 82 years old. I have been complaining about the Sunny Market since it opened. Shame on you, Mark Holmberg! Any reporter who is worth his salt knows what has been going on in that horrible place! The police should have closed it down years ago.

  • frizfreling

    Sunny Market is open. They do not hire criminals. You are profiling the neighborhood and your arguments are ungrounded. I have lived on the block for five years and do not appreciate the media’s seedy narrative to an area completely gentrified.

  • Hateful

    Yeah what a bunch of racist garbage you all have spewed. No doubt the intersection of Meadow and Cary has been known for crime or “suspicious activity”, but are we really making the logical jump that these businesses welcomed or encouraged crime in the area?

  • Only right!! they get what they deserve

    I noticed the older lady in video claims they help out a lot of people here in the community with coffee and so forth.. But let me tell you some good stuff I personally hands on hands know for a fact they not only help the people with their coffee but as well as the junkies to support their drug addictions by sending them to the circle k and other stores to steal bars of soap, bc powders (that’s why they have them behind the counter now) , batteries, cell phone chargers, boxes of candy,soap powder,lighters,car oil,car air fresheners, and i could go on and on about what they send them to steal. So then the ones trying to get a little bit of cash then turn around take them to the dj’s and sunny’s to sale for a little bit of money to support such habits for the stores to then turn around and sell these products at a higher price making a profit off of something that was never theirs to begin with. Not only should the stores get cracked down on but all the people who were involved in such activities which most hang out there in the parking lot and on the corner of the bp and across from .. Some have been prosecuted and some have not but this shall be a lesson learned and eye opener for all involved or the ones thinking of getting involved to stop doing this bull or else pay what gets dished to them on the table and stop acting like the innocent ones..

  • Working Man


  • dave

    U guys accusing dj market of foul play must realize the solution to a cleaner neighborhood is not on them. It will take bigger steps then getting rid of just them to make our neighborhood as safe as other parts of rva. U need a complete overhaul of who occupies the housing to truly change the perception of our area. Too many uneducated ppl with limited class and working talent live in the area. They act ghetto and make the area sketch. Until they move out and more younger professionals with a drive for success move in…we will continue to have the problems we have r having.

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