Woman Wins A Prize Playing Slots; Casino Refused Payment

Tamara Bean recently walked into the Ameristar Casino Hotel, which is located in Council Bluffs, Iowa, and started playing slot machines. But she couldn’t even dream what was about to happen to her.

She started her battle with a one-armed bandit and eventually won it, scoring a payday. Naturally, she felt happy and wanted to cash out her winnings, but it wasn’t possible. For some reason, the casino refused to pay her the money, and this is actually what made all the fuss.

All of the details were shared by WOWT TV News, which is a TV station from Iowa. According to their report, Bean was not able to collect her winnings because she was banned from the casino in the first place. In fact, Bean was banned for a thing that is not really connected to a casino. The reason she made it to the do-not-allow list is that she possessed marijuana when she entered the casino.

In fact, the casino had all the right to ban her as weed is still not legal in Iowa. So, what’s the problem then?

Well, the thing is that Tamara Bean is a casino regular. The bag of weed was found back in 2002, which is 17 years before her winnings were denied.

However, what is an interesting turn of events is that Bean was a regular at the casino after that. In fact, the casino always welcomed her and even gave her a reward card recently. So, what actually changed in their attitude towards Bean?

Same Person, Different Name

The thing is, back in 2002, Tamara Bean wasn’t married. Her last name was Sheffield, and she was recorded as such in the list of banned people. After she got married, she took her partner’s last name and became Tamara Bean.

Workers at the casino were never actually able to figure that it was the same person — until recently. Somebody managed to connect all dots among the workers and found out that Tamara Sheffield is actually Tamara Bean.

Therefore, Ameristar accepted her money and let her play for years simply because nobody actually compared the record of Bean and Sheffield. It’s probably that when they compared the social security number when she went to claim her winnings, they found that this is actually the same person who has been visiting a casino very often.

The amount of money that Tamara Bean managed to win is not really that big. It’s $1,733. Legally speaking, the casino doesn’t have to pay her her winnings, but it is their mistake that they were not able to properly monitor their guests.

Right now, many casino lovers who were banned for some reason from a casino probably get various ideas to cheat the system. Nevertheless, they probably wouldn’t be able to do that as this case was a wake-up call for many land-based casinos across the US to double-check everything before they let people who were blacklisted play.

What About Mobile?

Land-based casinos may solve this problem, but what about online casinos? If a person is banned from an online casino, the platform would usually ban their IP address. However, there is always a workaround, as many people use VPNs in order to circumvent being banned.

Although the best online casinos on the web make sure that such things don’t happen, there are many platforms which simply don’t focus on this problem. Therefore, the online gambling industry needs to focus on this and find the best possible ways to solve it as soon as possible.

Nevertheless, all workers in the online casino space are working hard to work out issues and improve the online casino experience.


A sports enthusiast, Ryan helps cover sports betting news from around the country, highlighting some of the more interesting events going on in the USA.