WASHINGTON - Police are investigating the death of a local restaurant and food truck owner.
Joey Belcher, co-owner of Sticky Rice, a popular sushi-style eatery in Northeast D.C., was found dead in his Capitol Hill apartment.
Belcher's family released a statement that says Belcher died of unknown causes.
According to D.C. police, Belcher's body was found about 3:28 p.m. Monday in the 200 block of I Street NE, where he lived.
"Members of the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded to the scene and determined that there were no signs consistent with life," police said in a statement.
"Joey was revered by many and loved by many more," his sister, Mimi, says in a statement. "My brother's quirky, ironic humor and wonderfully warm, magnanimous nature endeared him to all who knew him."
Belcher is also survived by his parents, Joe and Irene, of Henderson, Nev.; his brother-in-law Sergi Ferre; and his 6-year-old niece, Riley.
A New Orleans native, Belcher, 37, was an integral part of the H Street revitalization. In addition to Sticky Rice, which also has locations in Baltimore and Richmond, he owned Dangerously Delicious Pies on H Street plus the Chupacabra and Peanut Butter Jelly Time food trucks, according to the Washington City Paper.
He was also a partner at 1905 Bistro & Bar on 9th Street, NW.
Belcher's family says Joey was a stunt pilot and talented musician, and owned several businesses in the mortgage and real estate industry before he pursued his passion for food. He moved to D.C. in 2008.
Through posts on the restaurant's Facebook page, friends and co-workers are remembering Belcher as someone who loved food and the communities he served.
Police are waiting on the medical examiner to determine the cause and manner of death. In the meantime, homicide detectives will continue to investigate.
A public wake is planned from 5 to 8 p.m., Dec. 21, followed by a Roman Catholic funeral service on Dec. 22 at 11 a.m. Both will take place at Joseph Gawler's Sons, 5130 Wisconsin Ave. NW, D.C.
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