The owners of a deli in SoMa were severely beaten on Monday by a suspect who had just stolen a beverage and walked out of the store, according to the SFPD.
Rima Jodeh, a mother of three and the owner of Tony Baloney's delicatessen at Howard and 7th Street, was working at the store Monday with her husband when she says a man walked in, grabbed a drink from the cooler, and walked out. It's not clear if any words were exchanged, but as the Chronicle reports via Jodeh's daughter, Jodeh went to shut the door to prevent the suspect from returning, which he did moments later.
According to the daughter, "He punched her in the face. He grabbed her and started beating her." Jodeh's husband was reportedly hit as well.
Jodeh was badly bloodied and bruised, and her daughter told the Chronicle that her ears were bleeding "from where her earrings were punched into her ears."
The suspect was arrested, according to the SFPD, and booked on charges of battery, shoplifting, and trespassing — but a lack of sufficient identification has delayed his being publicly identified.
The incident follows just a few weeks after a corner store owner was assaulted and stabbed in the eye in Lower Pacific Heights.
Jodeh and her husband Tony have owned and operated the deli for three decades, and they say they have dealt with multiple break-ins, robberies, and assaults over the years — and in particular Jodeh, who is Palestinian and wears a head covering, was targeted following 9/11, her daughter says.
The couple tells KRON4 that some good Samaritans came to their aid outside and helped restrain the suspect until police arrived — and one of them was assaulted as well. Jodeh says the man has walked in and stolen items repeatedly, but in the past she has let it go in order to avoid trouble.
The Jodehs also say they're concerned about the mayor's plan to locate the city's first drug-sobering center a half block away from their business, telling KRON4 that they hope there will be adequate security to protect them and residents of the area.
Rima Jodeh reportedly was back at work Tuesday, despite her injuries, because her daughter says "she doesn't take time off."