JEFFERSONVILLE, Ohio (WCMH)–Three local gaming arcades were raided by agents of the Ohio Casino Control Commission, who claim the businesses are making illegal casino cash pay outs.
Two Lucky You Games of Skill Arcades, one in Jeffersonville and the other in Wilmington, are being investigated after receiving complaints the businesses may have violated Ohio law.
NBC4 arrived at the Jeffersonville location shortly after the raid began. Using search warrants, agents removed electronic slot machines and turned dozens of gamblers away.
Authorities say game of skill operations can’t pay out cash, claiming complaints lead them to raid Lucky You.
“What we have determined over the years through our investigations that many of these of these businesses that portray themselves as a skill-based establishment are in actuality operating illegal slot machines,” said Jennifer Franks, Spokesperson for the Ohio Casino Control Commission.
Jeff Trimble said he lives in the area and has gambled at the Jeffersonville location for years. Today, he was one of those turned away.
“It just basically goes by money,” he said. “You just walk in, you put $10 in, you hit $50. You walk out, there is a voucher room where you cash your voucher, for part cash part gift card.”
Commission officials said only the four Ohio casinos can pay out cash prizes. Skill games arcades cannot pay cash, gift cards or equivalent.
”Today, our agents will be seizing other items we need for our investigation,” said Franks.
Shawn Long, neighboring business owner, said the owner of Lucky You gave a lot to the community.
“(The) owner is a very respectable guy, good to the community, gives a lot to the community,” said Long, owner of Agriline Supply.
We are not naming the owner, but agents raided his rural home too on State Route 734. Electronic slot machines were carried out of the building into two waiting Fayette County sheriff’s trailers and hauled away.
“The most I ever won was about $100, nothing major,” Trimble said.
Business owners said the parking lots at Jeffersonville Crossing Center are filled with vehicles on the weekends because Lucky You does a brisk business.
NBC4 was told by some patrons of Lucky You that during the raid they ushered out and still had money in the machines. Franks said no one has been arrested and the investigation continues.