Lovejoy store owner apologizes for Facebook rant

BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – Ahmed Alshami, owner of the IGA Community Express market admits he made a recent post on Facebook in anger, and only directed it at some in the neighborhood.

Alshami has owned the store at the corner of Ludington and Davey Streets for about two years and says he does a good business. But he has a new message for some in the community who he didn’t mean to offend, “I want to apologize to all the good people,” he said.

Alshami says his message was directed to people who he believes are unjustly trying to shut his store down. He posted a photo of himself giving the finger, and writing the following

From the Davey & Ludington store owners… The people who sit here and say they want the store shut down are the same people buying wraps to smoke weed… We will stay open regardless of what you want… Long stay the Arab stores… We are gonna stay here and make this money! So try to shut us down.

He posted the message on Colleen Russell’s community Facebook page called Lovejoy Village Iron Island Resource.

“I think that he took the wrong approach. The community is obviously upset about it,” Russell told News 4. “He could’ve come to us and maybe we could’ve helped him but at this point, I don’t know how much more we can do to help him. He’s pretty much made his own bed.”

Her page is where some other people had recently posted their concerns that there might be drug activity around his store. When asked if there is drug activity around his store, Alshami said, “Yes sir. I’m not say no. There is drug activity not just on this corner.” He says he can only control what happens inside his store.

As it turns out, Alshami was arrested three weeks ago in Cheektowaga and charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance after police say they found crack cocaine near him in the back seat of a car.

Alshami says he spent about two weeks at the Erie County Holding Center, before the judge released him on time served. “We got pulled over and they said they found some drug inside the car. Nobody mentioned it’s his, they no find anything on me, they no find anything on anybody, they charge everybody in the car. Whatever they want to think, think.”

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