Suspects still at large
Staff and players at four casino arcades in Florida have been subject to a brazen 24-hour crime spree by suspects who are still at large.
scene of an armed robbery investigation
WINK News reported that on Thursday, four casino arcades in the Lee County area got hit with robbery and grand theft incidents in just 24 hours. Fort Myers Police Department took to Twitter just past midnight on Thursday to warn potential slot machine gamblers that 3900 Cleveland Avenue, the location of Arcade Black Horse, was the scene of an armed robbery investigation:
The attempted robbery of Black Horse took place a little before the crime was called in at 1:14pm, with an employee reporting that despite one suspect carrying a gun, the would-be robbers left with no cash.
On Thursday, suspects hit the Lucky Turtle Arcade and the White Sands Arcade. At Lucky Turtle, a woman allegedly had a gun pointed to her head to coerce her into opening the safe. At White Sands, two men wearing masks pulled a gun on an employee and escaped with an undisclosed sum of money.
Acquiring a taste
The fourth target in 24 hours was the Vegas Experience in Fort Myers, where police believe the suspects kick-started their spree on Wednesday night. Video cameras caught the two men entering the casino at around 7:30pm and playing different slot machines for several hours.
discretely open the lockboxes and remove a significant amount of money before leaving”
While there, according to Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers, the pair managed “to discretely open the lockboxes and remove a significant amount of money before leaving.”
Crime Stoppers coordinator Trish Routte stated that the suspects got away with about $18,000.
Of the casinos hit later, the suspects absconded with an undisclosed sum from both Lucky Turtle and White Sands Arcade. WINK cites Lucky Turtle patron Tommy Ingraham as saying he was playing when “the blonde lady, that I guess runs it, came running out, told me that she just got robbed.”
Serial casino crimes
According to WINK, SWFL Crime Stoppers, the Cape Coral PD, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, and the Fort Myers PD are investigating other cases “which are believed to be related.”
While a crime spree involving multiple casinos in 24 hours might have set a new record or even created its own category, gambling-related crime is nothing new. Just this month, for example, a man was murdered at a Vietnam casino over an alleged $3,000 gambling debt. During the heart of the pandemic, a UK restaurant owner filed false COVID-19 relief claims and used the money to gamble.