HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The Henrico County Police Division is investigating an act of vandalism after a business owner found hateful messages and racist slurs spray painted on his restaurant.
Tony Sappal has been the owner of India K’Raja Restaurant, near Tuckernuck Drive and West Broad Street in Henrico, for 27 years.
This past weekend marked the restaurant’s 27th anniversary. Instead of celebrating, Sappal said he showed up to the business Saturday night and saw his building had been vandalized.
“When I turned to the back of the parking lot driving, the first thing I noticed was a big graffiti sign with a hateful message: Do* He***,” he said. “Such a hateful message. I was shocked and disturbed by this.”
A profane word, along with other racial slurs, were spray painted on the side and on the back of the restaurant’s building. The front door and glass windows were spray painted in dark red. According to Sappal, the wire to the outside speakers was also torn down.
Henrico police said the crime is believed to have happened between 5 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1. They said the vandals reportedly spray-painted the dumpster and the fencing, too.
Police told 8News the incident isn’t part of a trend, nor have there been any recent documented incidents similar in nature.
“Acts of intimidation or hatred will not be tolerated in our community. Anyone committing criminal acts will be charged accordingly,” said Henrico County’s Chief of Police, Eric English, in a media release Monday afternoon.
Sappal told 8News he wants to show the community how hurtful these messages can be.
“It really feels, like, very scary that this would happen to us,” he said. “But at the same time we are strong and we’re going to keep doing what is right.”