Casinos have seen it all and they know how to spot foul play when there is one. Billy J. Butler, a lucky punter who tried to stay under the radar, was arrested over attempted fraud at the Blue Chip Casino, asking another person to collect his winnings. The man tried to send someone else to pick his jackpot in order to avoid losing the money for child support payments he was falling behind.
Indiana Takes Gambling Winnings from Irresponsible Parents
Some states, including Indiana, have laws that automatically seize gambling winnings of people who have not been paying child support. The man won a small $1,340 prize playing at the slots at the casino but didn’t want to go and collect it in person as he owed $48,000 in child support payments.
He also won another undisclosed amount from a table game at the venue. In any event, he wanted to avoid collecting either prize and instead asked a woman to go to the venue and pick up the money for him. He offered to pay the woman $200, which was all established by the casino and the Indiana Gaming Commission police officer who was tipped to the case.
The woman gave up Butler after being questioned by the inspector leading to the man’s arrest. Butler has had brushes with the authorities before. He was arrested in April because of alleged cheating at another gaming venue. The Mishawaka Police was the one to conduct the arrest. Butler was also found in unlawful possession of a firearm.
Casinos Particular about Winners Picking Their Winnings
There are many reasons why casinos do not grant winnings to just anyone who comes along to claim them on behalf of someone else. Butler’s case is exemplary. But other than irate casino patrons who may discover that their money had gone to some duplicitous character, there are other objective reasons, too.
There is a good number of gamblers who owe some debt that is collectible under state laws in not just Indiana, but other places in the United States, too. That is why winners will keep playing but then, when the time to collect comes, they will usually try to have someone else collect the money, oblivious of the safeguards that casinos use to make sure this doesn’t happen in the first place.
In a similar case dating to 2020, the Ameristar Casino alerted police to a man who was trying to collect a $1,358 slot jackpot through a proxy and was promptly arrested. A police officer in Indiana was found to have contracted the services of another person to cash out the jackpot. The officer was also owing child support money.