Search warrant leads to seizure of gambling machines

On May 15, 2019 Agents from the Carbon Metro Drug Task Force and Officers from the Price City Police Department served a search warrant at Castle Castle Country Hobby & Pawn and Laundromat and seized 14 slot machines and 3 coin pusher machines.  The business is owned by Marty S. Robbins, DOB 10-12-63 of Price.

This culminates an investigation spanning many months and citizen complaints over the alleged gambling machines.  Technicalities in the former gambling law provided a potential loophole in enforcement of Utah’s no gambling law.  That changed on May 14, 2019 at midnight when the new law went into effect.  Possession of gambling machines is against the law.  Owners throughout the state were given notice of this new change.

The seized coin pushers were actively working and an undisclosed amount of cash was seized with those machines.  The electronic slot machines each had a sign taped to them to the effect that they were “Out of Order”, however each machine was still plugged into a power strip or wall socket, and allegedly still fully functional.  No money was seized with those machines.

Gambling is typically viewed as a victimless crime, however, complainants and agents have allegedly noted, that those observed playing these machines are typically among the most vulnerable citizens from our community.  They are the least likely to have expendable cash for recreational gambling.

The Carbon County Attorney’s Office will review police reports to determine what charges are appropriate to file.  Gambling or possessing a gambling device, is a Class B misdemeanor for a first offense.