The police raided the Watauga Social Lounge Poker Club in October 2022. It is located in Watauga, between Fort Worth and Dallas. The officers arrested more than 20 staff, seized $205,000 in cash, about $200,000 in equipment, and fined 49 players $360 each.
Even so, three players filed a plea in December as the others still wait for their court hearing. Yet, Daryl Gresham, one of the players, and his colleagues were excited after realizing that the court had dismissed their fines and charges.
Their official dismissal stated that Gresham was the defendant in the numbered and styled case on April 18, 2023. He faced a gambling balls, cards, and dice charge that D.A.- Interest of Justice dismissed. Still, other players got similar dismissals as the three who accepted the plea were still awaiting their cases.
Are the Players Fully Content?
The dismissal made Gresham calm down. But he said that the court has only dropped part of the injustice 46 out of the 49 charged players. He wants to receive the $205,000 that the Travis County Sheriff's Office (TCSO) took from them.
Gresham revealed that 19 raiders arrested them in the poker club despite knowing that their action was illegal. He is still angry at the authorities for not taking any disciplinary measures against the raiders. The player reiterated that the department has to protect and serve people, not rob them.
Steve Nichols posted on Facebook that he initially intended to take the issue to court but was disappointed after seeing the Tarrant County District Attorney's office's cowardice. Yet, he said that the good guys had made a huge achievement even though the DA's office wasn't pleased seeing him present in court.
Nichols lacked extra details on the ongoing criminal cases against the raiders. Even so, he hopes that Tarrant County will make a wise decision.
He knows that their chances of getting their money back are slim but he is optimistic that the cases will prompt Texas lawmakers to legalize poker to prevent other players and gaming venues from experiencing the same ordeal. An attorney involved in the case said that solidarity won in court yet other lawyers asked for jury trials.
What Transpired in the Courtroom?
The Watauga Social Lounge Poker Club launched in January 2022 and Watauga Mayor Arthur L. Miner attended its opening ceremony. The initial Tarrant County warrant indicated that the authorities had the mandate to seize betting proceeds, financial instruments, currency, and any valuable item associated with transferring, spending, or obtaining huge sums of money from participating in illegal activities. Also, they can seize bank bags, coupons, gift certificates, credit card receipts, add-on plays, administrative fees, checks, papers, and tickets.
Judge George Gallagher signed the warrant showing that the Sheriff's Office's staff searched for various non-poker gambling apparatuses like dice, video game devices, roulette wheels, and dice that contravene the Texas Penal Code, Chapter 47. Besides, the raid happened on the Fall Classic Poker $420 buy-in $100,000 guaranteed Main Event's Day 2.