Richard Kim, owner Of Town Square Market in northwest DC
WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA)--A stunning development to report in our ongoing 9 News Now investigation into a Northwest Washington store we caught allegedly selling alcohol to minors.
Town Square Market owner Richard Kim pleaded NOT guilty in D.C. Superior Court to criminal charges.
When 9News Now first confronted Kim in January, he was combative and argued that he always asked his young customers for identification. After his court appearance, a very different Mr. Kim emerged, a man who was told us he was filled with remorse and regret.
"Very sorry," said Kim in broken English. He expressed his remorse for allegedly selling alcohol to minors. A friend from his Virginia church helped to translate.
We asked, "What does Mr. Kim say to the parents of the children who bought alcohol from him?"
"I feel very sorry. I'm sorry," he said.
Kim isn't just in trouble with the law. He's aggravated his own family.
"My wife say, you trouble! Why you minor sale?" said Kim. "My wife too much angry, my children too much angry."
That anger stems from the nearly 40 police citations issued to minors who purchased at Kim's Northwest Washington store, a business into which he says he sunk his life savings.
"I really don't know about the regulations. It's very hard for me," said Kim through a translator.
Kim now regrets buying the store and hopes to sell it as soon as possible and return to Korea.
We asked the translator, "How would Mr. Kim feel if someone sold his children alcohol?"
"It's no good. It's something wrong," said Kim, through the translator.
Town Square Market recently bought an ID scanner to help identify fake identification. But it may be too late.
Kim will be back in court on April 17th. He's now at the center of two parallel investigations-this criminal one, and another by ABRA, DC's alcohol control board. Town Square Market's liquor license is up for renewal in six weeks.
Written by Andrea McCarren
9NEWS NOW & WUSA9.COM