After robbery, donations pour in to Hyde Park restaurant that feeds those in need

CHICAGO (WLS) -- After a Hyde Park restaurant that often feeds people for free was robbed, there's been an outpouring of support and plenty of donations - some from as far away as Seattle.

There was a steady stream of customers placing orders at Litehouse Whole Food Grill Friday morning. While some dropped a little something extra in the tip jar, others like Sharon Ponder-Ballard donated $150 toward the eatery's stolen receipts.

"We're very strong on supporting black-owned businesses," she said. "And not only are they a premiere black-owned business, but they are so generous in their giving."

Police continue to look for the two armed robbers who blamed their crime on the coronavirus when they targeted the restaurant Wednesday night.

Since opening seven years ago, the owner said the restaurant has served tens of thousands of free meals to the hungry. The grill has lost more than half his business because of the outbreak, but so far, none of its 15 employees.

That's the reason why Chicago native and Seattle physician Dr. Asra Khan knew she had to help after seeing the story on the ABC7.

"We're encouraged to give and kind of be open and help others as well," Khan said. "I understand it must be a very difficult and trying time."

Owner Rico Nance said between the donations and all the support he's more than made up for the $700 that was stolen.

He said it's also proof he's doing the right thing, which he said he's going to keep doing in his community.
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