TONAWANDA, NY-- A Tonawanda business owner is facing sexual abuse charges, as well as losing his licenses to sell liquor in his store.
The New York State Liquor Authority suspended two licenses for the Sheridan Market, also known as Sunoco on Sheridan and the Sheridan Liquor Store, both located at 1066 Sheridan Drive in Tonawanda.
The owner of the liquor store and manager of the Sunoco, Mr. Nasr Mohamed, was charged with sexual abuse, unlawfully dealing with a child and prohibited sale of alcoholic beverages.
Investigators say Mohamed allegedly pressured an 18-year-old female employee to drink shots of liquor. According to a press release, the teen became intoxicated and ill and ran into a back room. It's alleged that Mohamed followed the teen to the back room and assaulted her.
The teen fled the store and was taken to the hospital for treatment. It was her first day on the job according to investigators.
According to the SLA, there were at least two other similar incidents in which Mohamed was allegedly involved. According to the release, another female employee was drinking inside the store and lost consciousness. She woke up in her backyard. She contacted police after she discovered bruises on her body. Mohamed told police he only drove the victim home.
A similar incident happened on November 24, 2016, according to investigators, but the victim refused to cooperate with police after calling police to report the assault.
“These reports allege a frightening pattern of deviant, dangerous, and disgusting behavior, including claims that the licensee’s employees were plied with alcohol and then sexually assaulted,” said Counsel to the Authority Christopher R. Riano in a released statement. “I want to thank the Town of Tonawanda Police and the Members of the State Liquor Authority for sending a strong message that this reprehensible behavior cannot, and will not, be tolerated.”
In addition to the police charges, Mohamed is charged with with seven violations of the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) laws, including improper conduct for the crime of sexual abuse in the 1st degree and unlawfully dealing with a minor, providing alcohol to an underage person, providing alcohol to a visibly intoxicated person, and for allowing the consumption of alcohol inside the liquor store on August 28, 2016 and April 7, 2017.