Employees of Seattle's HoneyHole said that its owner has been missing since the end of October
The owner of a sandwich shop in Seattle has reportedly gone missing — and according to his employees, they have not been paid nor can they operate the business without him.
Evan Bramer, owner of the HoneyHole in the city’s Capitol Hill area, first disappeared at the end of October and has not been seen for a week, The Stranger — an alt, biweekly Seattle newspaper — reported.
Since he's gone missing, HoneyHole has closed. “Sorry for the inconvenience,” a sign posted to the door reads, per MyNorthwest.com.
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The Stranger added that a manager of the establishment has since contacted police to file a missing persons report before several HoneyHole workers walked over to the East Precinct to speak with authorities after they didn't show up.
Responding to PEOPLE’s request for comment Friday, a Seattle Police Department spokesperson wrote: “The Seattle police department is not investigating this as a missing person. We have no further information to provide.”
Despite attempts to contact Bramer, HoneyHole employees told CBS affiliate KIRO-TV that they had not seen or heard him.
HoneyHole did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.
Chris Helling, the shop’s manager, said she had sent messages to Bramer. “I've texted him 10 times,” she told The Stranger. “I just wanted him to hear that there are real human consequences.”
The sandwich shop's workers also said that paper checks issued to employees have bounced and that HoneyHole’s food account has lapsed.
MJ Torgerson, a cook for HoneyHole, expressed concern about not being able to pay rent as a result of Bramer’s alleged disappearance. “I’ve got rent for this month,” he told The Stranger. “And then after that, I’ve got–that’s all I’ve got.”
“It’s just awful some of them can’t pay their rent. It just feels like we were scammed almost,” Cody Deasy, a former HoneyHole employee, said, per KIRO. Deasy reportedly quit his job there because Bramer allegedly cut his hours to save money.
In July, Bramer took over the HoneyHole, which has been regarded as a popular local spot. In an interview with Capitol Hill Blog at the time, he spoke of his plans for the place.
“I know the HoneyHole standards. I know what it should be brought to. It has always been a 100% inclusive place,” Bramer said following reports of management and diversity issues surrounding the business' previous owners.
However, workers alleged, per The Stranger, that conditions didn’t change for the better under Bramer’s leadership — and that the shop continued to lose workers.
“He didn’t care as much about the quality of the food as Kristin [Rye, the previous owner] did,” Deasy said of Bramer, per Eater Seattle. “He let go a lot of the key people that were responsible for food quality.”
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