Fremont Casino Hit with $300K Fine over Botched Theft Investigation
The Nevada Gaming Control Board on Thursday reached a settlement with Fremont Hotel & Casino in downtown Las Vegas and fined the gambling venue for an alleged botched investigation that resulted in a casino patron being kept in security’s custody for 90 minutes.
Fremont’s owner, casino operator Boyd Gaming, was slapped with a $300,000 fine for the incident. The company did not admit to allegations of misconduct leveled against its property as part of the settlement.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board filed and reviewed on Thursday a four-count complaint against Fremont. According to the filing, the downtown Vegas casino carried out a botched investigation into an alleged theft that took place on November 24, 2019.
The incident involved one casino patron accusing another of stealing money from a slot machine at the gambling venue.
According to the complaint, the two customers were playing slots near each other right before the alleged theft occurred. One of the women was seen on surveillance footage to be playing, cashing out, and then moving.
The accused woman then went to the same gaming machine. The first patron that played on the device claimed that there was about $200 left on the machine which the other player took. Security at the casino found the accused patron later that day sitting at a different machine.
Regulator Slams Fremont for Not Conducting the Investigation Calmly and Thoroughly
According to the Nevada Gaming Control Board’s complaint, security at Fremont did not conduct an investigation into the incident calmly as it was supposed to do, but instead grabbed the accused patron by the neck and arm from behind, then placed her in handcuffs and took her into custody.
The accused woman was in the casino’s security office for about an hour and a half, during which time she tried to prove her innocence. The Nevada gaming regulator slammed Fremont’s security for allegedly berating the patron and not taking into consideration her version of the story.
The Gaming Control Board further noted in the complaint that even though “there were ample avenues available to reconstruct the alleged events”, Fremont’s security staff failed to pursue those avenues and that resulted in a “factually flawed” and incomplete investigation into the incident.
The accused patron eventually had to pay the amount equal to what she allegedly stole, $202 in cash, while maintaining her innocence. The money was given to the other patron. At a later stage, that other patron was seen on footage cash out a voucher from her pocket for the exact above amount.
According to the complaint, receipts from the slot machine the theft allegedly occurred at as well as surveillance footage showed that the other woman lied about the incident.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board’s complaint read that other surveillance and slot staff were also negligent in assessing the available video and relevant slot reports and that if these were examined properly, they would have exonerated the accused slots player.
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