Store owner: burglars hammer through cement wall of convenience store

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- One could mistake the inside of the Sunshine Grocery bathroom for something out of a war zone; someone smashed the cement wall between the toilet and the outside, leaving bricks in the toilet and sawdust on the floor.

Worku Wardofa said he closed the Jackson Avenue store at 11 p.m. Thursday. People broke in some time overnight.

Wardofa said the criminals took nearly $18,000 of tobacco and nearly $10,000 in cash.

"They broke the camera, they broke the alarms," he said.

In fact, Wardofa couldn't even quantify all the damage because they broke the video surveillance system.

"Memphis is getting worse," he said.

The husband and father of two said he gave up driving cabs to buy and run his own business a year and a half ago. But he said Memphis was no place for a family business.

"Probably, we'll move. We didn't decided yet. I don’t know how we continue to live in this kind of city. Three months ago, my wife get robbed and now this happened again," he said.

He also was concerned his alarm system at the store didn't function correctly.A representative from Federal Alarm Company told Wardofa his phone line wasn't working, thus prohibiting his alarm from going off.

Wardofa said he paid $34 a month for his alarm and warned other business owners to make sure theirs work.