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Joseph “Joey” Edward Belcher, a 37-year-old entrepreneur involved in various local eateries, was found dead in his Capitol Hill apartment Monday. At press time, the official cause of death remained unknown.

According to various media reports, Metropolitan Police Department officers discovered the body of an unresponsive male at 3:28 p.m. after responding to a call at Senate Square Apartments (201 I St. NE).

Belcher was a fixture of the D.C. hospitality scene, boasting a hand in venues as varied as Sticky Rice DC and Rock N Roll Hotel to the rapidly expanding Dangerously Delicious Pies franchise and the short-lived Peanut Butter Jelly Time food truck. The Atlas District Sticky Rice — the original restaurant remains in Richmond, Va. — debuted in 2008; it got the first family’s seal of approval in November 2011 when first lady Michelle Obama popped in.

Calls to the local Sticky Rice were not returned, but Belcher’s friends and business associates have turned to Facebook for solace.

“To those of you suffering this incomprehensible loss with me, Joey Belcher was simply an awesome guy. He was kind, sympathetic, endlessly generous, weird and funny, and he loved everyone [sic] of you,” his roommate blasted out to Team Sticky Rice.

“While it is hopelessly cliché, Joey is the last person in the world who would have us standing around sobbing. So, carry on we shall,” Belcher’s pal pledged, adding, “Hang in there. 2013 owes us huge.”

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