Crown Heights store owner says fate of shop is in pastor’s hands

Posted: Updated:
CROWN HEIGHTS -

A Crown Heights business owner says the fate of his hardware store is in the hands of a pastor who put his building up for sale.

Mohammed Kamara and supporters of his American Star Hardware store marched Sunday from his business on St. John's Place to Faith Gospel Assembly Church, where one of the pastors is a landlord for the building that houses the store.

The march brought signs to put pressure on Pastor Denzil Vaughn, who is a landlord and administrator of the building, after the protesting group says a "for sale" sign was put on the building.

Kamara wants to purchase the business outright after raising more than $25,000, but the group claims the pastor and other administrators are refusing to sell it.

Kamara says he feels like the pastor is trying to evict and displace him from the community.

Vaughn closed his car door and window when News 12 attempted to speak with him, but a church member who got in the car with him says Kamara owes rent.

"He's not getting evicted, and he owes two years (of) rent," says the church member. "He's telling you lies."

Kamara's lawyer says he does owe money, but that the landlords are refusing to sell him the building despite the money that was raised.

The lawyer adds that the case is going to court next month.

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